S Korea, U.S. conclude joint military exercises

17:01, March 18, 2010      

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South Korea and the United States wrapped up Thursday their annual joint military drills denounced by the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) as a preparation for invasion, while the DPRK showed no unusual military move, military authorities here said.

The 11-day exercises, called the Key Resolve and Foal Eagle, were aimed at rehearsing the defense of South Korea in case of emergencies and improving combined and joint operational posture between the two militaries.About 10,000 U.S. troops and 8,000 reinforcement personnel participated in the joint drill for the Key Resolve exercise, and 20,000 South Korean troops were involved in the Foal Eagle.An army unit formed to counter weapons of mass destruction (WMD) that the DPRK is believed to possess was unveiled for the first time during the exercises this year.

The DPRK, still technically at war with South Korea following a 3-year-long civil war, previously put its military on alert and threatened to halt its denuclearization process and strengthen its nuclear deterrence in protest of the annual drills, vowing retaliation if attacked. The South Korean government has played down the threats as " conventional and hackneyed."

Source: Xinhua
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