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    South Korean and U.S. Marines participate in the U.S.-South Korea joint landing exercises called Ssangyong, part of the Foal Eagle military exercises, in Pohang, South Korea, Monday, March 31, 2014

    US, South Korea to Hold Joint Drills Next Week - Reports

    © AP Photo / Ahn Young-joon
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    TOKYO (Sputnik) - The annual command post exercises of South Korea and the United States, previously known as Key Resolve, will now be named "Dong Maeng" and will be held on 4-12 March, the Yonhap news agency reported on Sunday, citing military sources.

    The US Department of Defense said Saturday that Washington and Seoul had agreed to stop their Key Resolve and Foal Eagle series of joint exercises, following the phone talks between US Acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan and his South Korean counterpart, Jeong Kyeong-doo.

    According to Yonhap, the allies had also agreed to maintain robust military readiness through new command post exercises.

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    The Wall Street Journal newspaper earlier reported, citing sources, that the US military had intended to reduce the scale of its joint drills with South Korea in the wake of the two-day US-North Korean summit in Hanoi.

    The long-standing tensions on the Korean Peninsula started to ease after North Korea's leader Kim Jong-un committed to denuclearizing and held historic summits with South Korean President Moon Jae-in and US President Donald Trump earlier in the year.

    Following his historic June 2018 summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in Singapore, Trump, apart from sanctions relief, pledged to suspend annual military exercises in exchange for Pyongyang's efforts of a complete dismantling of the country's nuclear weapons program.

    A second summit between Trump and Kim in Hanoi finished abruptly, raising concerns among the international community of further steps by Pyongyang on the much-anticipated dismantling of its nuclear and ICBM facilities.

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    In past years, Pyongyang has repeatedly slammed the US-South Korean drills as practice runs for a US-led invasion of the North, warning of a possible firm response to the maneuvers and military activity.


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