In this Sept 20, 2019 file photo, US soldiers participate in a military tactical demonstration during "Air Power Day" preview at US Osan Air Base in Pyeongtaek, Republic of Korea. (JUNG YEON-JE / AFP)
SEOUL - The combined forces of the Republic of Korea and the United States kicked off major springtime military exercise on Monday without field maneuvers, ROK's Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) said.
The JCS said in a statement that the Combined Command Post Training (CCPT), the annually-held ROK-US computer-simulated exercise, will run for nine days from Monday in a comprehensive consideration of the combined defense readiness.
The CCPT will not involve field maneuvers as it is computer-simulated and defensive in nature, the JCS noted.
US Special Representative Sung Kim and his deputy, Jung Pak, will meet with ROK officials, including nuclear envoy Noh Kyu-duk, during a five-day visit
Through the CCPT, the JCS anticipated that the combined forces of ROK and the United States could improve their joint operational capabilities and strengthen the combined defense readiness further.
The CCPT followed the Crisis Management Staff Training (CMST), the preliminary military drills that were conducted by the combined forces for four days last week to practice the management of possible pre-war emergency situation.
Meanwhile, the US envoy for the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea arrived in Seoul on Monday for talks with his ROK counterparts on ways to address Pyongyang's increased missile launches and concerns over the possible resumption of nuclear testing.
US Special Representative Sung Kim and his deputy, Jung Pak, will meet with ROK officials, including nuclear envoy Noh Kyu-duk, during a five-day visit.
On arrival, Kim told reporters he was in Seoul to continue "close coordination" on DPRK developments, Yonhap news agency reported, without elaborating.
He has said he is open to talks with DPRK at any time and without preconditions, but Pyongyang has so far rebuffed those overtures, accusing Washington of maintaining hostile policies such as sanctions and the military drills.
ROK media reported that Kim was also expected to meet with the transition team for President-elect Yoon Suk-yeol, who takes office in May.
A spokesperson for the team said there was no meeting confirmed between Yoon and Kim, and could not immediately confirm whether the envoy would be meeting other transition officials.
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