Seoul and Washington plan to hold the largest ever live fire exercise

South Korea and the United States plan to hold the largest-ever live-fire exercise in June as part of a program to celebrate the 70th anniversary of their alliance, South Korea's Defense Ministry said on Wednesday.

The ministry unveiled the program designed to strengthen the two allies' solidarity, demonstrate the technological superiority of their militaries, and highlight their focus on achieving peace through force of action, according to the ministry.

The two allies laid out the details of the program amid joint efforts to bolster deterrence against North Korea's continued provocations, including an intercontinental ballistic missile launch last week.

For the live-fire exercises scheduled for June, the two sides will mobilize high-tech military equipment, including pieces that integrate both manned and autonomous assets, to demonstrate the coalition's firepower and maneuverability.

The two allies have conducted massive joint live-fire exercises less than 10 times, including the most recent exercise in 2017.

South Korea is also seeking to hold an Armed Forces Day celebration with the participation of the US Forces in late September to show the alliance's capabilities in deterrence and response against North Korean threats, according to the ministry.

In addition, Seoul and Washington are working on a future defense vision for the bilateral alliance, which will be announced at their defense ministers' annual "Security Consultative Meeting (SCM)" talks, expected in October.

During the security consultative meeting, the two allies plan to co-host the first-ever meeting with defense ministers of UNC member states to reaffirm their support for security on the Korean Peninsula and enhance solidarity with them, the ministry said.

South Korea and the United States signed the Mutual Defense Treaty, a key alliance document, in October 1953, after the Korean War ended with an armistice 3 months earlier.

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