South Korea, U.S., and Japan Run Cooperative Missile Interception Drill

James Ryu, March 15, 2017, 9:23 a.m.

South Korea, the U.S., and Japan on Tuesday started a joint exercise with Aegis destroyers capable of detecting and intercepting North Korea's ballistic missiles.

It is the fourth drill of the kind since last June and takes place separately from ongoing South Korea-U.S. military exercises. A Navy spokesman here said the aim is "to suit the current security situation."

The three countries are increasingly worried about advancement in the North's missile technology, a government official here said.

At the core of the drill is real-time information exchange between the three countries in efforts to intercept ballistic missiles from the North.

It comes after the North on Feb. 12 fired a new medium-range missile dubbed Pukguksong-2 with a range of 2,500 to 3,000 km and simultaneously fired four improved Scuds last week.

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