"The scope of our exercises has not changed, White told reporters. "I won’t be able to speak to specific details, but our exercises are annual, they’ve been long standing, they’re defensive in nature and they will continue. These are alliance decisions."
Earlier in May, North Korea unilaterally decided to suspend high-level inter-Korean talks over the drills conducted jointly by Washington and Seoul.
These developments put the upcoming historic US-DPRK summit into jeopardy, though US President Donald Trump noted that North Korea had not notified the US about the cancellation of the Washington-Pyongyang meeting slated for June 12.
On May 11, the United States and South Korea launched their annual air combat exercise. About 100 aircraft are participating in the drills, which will last until May 25.