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S. Korea, U.S. conduct combined air exercise amid coronavirus

Defense 08:51 January 06, 2021

SEOUL, Jan. 6 (Yonhap) -- South Korea and the United States conducted their wintertime combined exercise last month amid concerns over the new coronavirus pandemic, a military source said Wednesday.

The allies held a scaled-back version of their original wintertime drills, codenamed Vigilant Ace, from Dec. 7-11, involving fighters, such as F-15K and KF-16 jets from South Korea and F-16s from the U.S., according to the source.

The annual Vigilant Ace exercise was replaced with a smaller training starting in 2018 to support diplomatic efforts to denuclearize North Korea.

"It was a regular training to check the allies' capability to carry out combined operations," an Air Force officer said.

In this file photo, taken Dec. 4, 2017, a South Korean F-15K fighter jet takes off from an air base in Gwangju, 330 kilometers southwest of Seoul, as South Korea and the United States begin a five-day joint air force drill. (Yonhap)


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