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Navy conducts first maritime drills of new year

All Headlines 11:06 January 04, 2019

SEOUL, Jan. 4 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's Navy on Friday conducted this year's first maritime drills, reiterating its commitment to maintaining a robust readiness posture despite ongoing peace efforts with North Korea.

The armed service mobilized several warships, including the 2,500-ton Chungbuk frigate, and a helicopter for the maneuvers in waters just south of the maritime buffer zone the two Koreas set near their sea boundary last year to reduce tensions and prevent accidental clashes.

The drills included a live-fire exercise and training designed to promote cooperation among service members in emergency operations.

"Through the maneuvers, we tried to build teamwork and renewed our resolve to fulfill our mission under any circumstances," Capt. Kim Hak-min in charge of the drills said.

After the third inter-Korean summit between President Moon Jae-in and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in Pyongyang in September, their defense ministers signed a military agreement involving a series of confidence-building and arms control measures.

The agreement includes setting up ground, air and maritime buffer zones to halt "all hostile acts" against each other.

sshluck@yna.co.kr
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