Amid rising tensions between the hermit country and the US, the infamous Seal Team 6 has been taking part in the Foal Eagle and Key Resolve exercise being carried out from March 7 to April 30 in South Korea.
The team is taking part in a drill which simulates the “removal” of North Korea's dictator Kim Jong-un, the south’s JoongAng Daily said.
The US military refused to confirm reports the squad, which killed Al Qaeda chief bin Laden in 2011, is in the region, but said “ground, air, naval and special operations” are taking part in “several joint and combined field training operations”.
Up to 17,000 US troops are involved in the special operation teams which are thought to also include the Army Rangers, Delta Force and Green Berets.
The training started just a day after the US deployed its THAAD ant-ballistic missile defence system to the region which is designed to destroy short, medium and intermediate range ballistic missiles after they are deployed.
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Last month, former US Navy Commander Gary Ross, said: “There are variety of Special Operations Forces (SOF) participating in Foal Eagle, as they do in most regional exercises.
“Foal Eagle is a regularly-scheduled, annual exercise that is the culmination of many months of planning and it is not being conducted in response to the current situation on peninsula.”
However, since then tensions have risen between the US and North Korea, with a US aircraft carrier strike group arriving in the region today.
Donald Trump ordered the USS Carl Vinson group to head to the Korean peninsula in an attempt to deter North Korea’s nuclear and long-rang missile ambitions, which it is developing in defiance of UN resolutions and sanctions.
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There has been an increasing sense of urgency as tension escalates amid concern North Korea could soon conduct a sixth nuclear test, or more missile launches.
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Mr Trump has taken a harder line than his predecessor Barack Obama, with a phonecall between the US President and Chinese President Xi Jinping, whose country is North Korea’s closest definition of an ally, taking place last night in a bid to calm relations.
America and South Korea prepare for war against North Korea
Tue, April 11, 2017
U.S. and South Korean marines participate in the endurance exercise in temperature below minus 20 degrees celsius under a scenario to defend the country from any possible attacks from North Korea.
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Mr Xi urged Mr Trump to carry out a peaceful resolution following a state-run Chinese newspaper warning the Korean peninsula was the closest it has been to a “military clash” since North Korea’s first nuclear test in 2006.
Mr Trump pressed Mr Xi to do more to curb North Korea’s nuclear programme when the leaders met in Florida last week.
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The US President yesterday tweeted North Korea was “looking for trouble” and the US would “solve the problem” with or without China’s help.
Mr Xi stressed China "is committed to the target of denuclearisation on the peninsula, safeguarding peace and stability on the peninsula, and advocates resolving problems through peaceful means", Chinese state broadcaster CCTV said.
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang, who said Trump had initiated the call, urged everyone to lower the tension.