Seoul [South Korea], Jan. 20 : South Korea, the United States and Japan will hold joint maritime drills this week to enhance capability to detect and trail ballistic missiles from North Korea.
The S. Korean Navy said Aegis-equipped destroyers from the three countries will take part in the three-day maritime exercise to detect and trace North Korean missiles under simulated conditions, reported the country's Yonhap news agency on Friday.
The drills come amid speculations that Pyongyang may launch an intercontinental ballistic missile from a mobile launcher at the Panghyon airfield in the northwest.
The missile warning exercise will be conducted from Friday to Sunday in waters near the three nations, mobilizing three Aegis-equipped destroyers.
In October, South Korea and the U.S. agreed to hold regular missile warning exercises also involving Japan during their annual security meetings of defence chiefs, known as the Security Consultative Meeting (SCM), in Washington.
South Korea's Sejong the Great destroyer, a 7,600-ton Aegis-equipped vessel, will be mobilized, together with the 8,800-ton USS Curtis Wilbur and Japan's Kirishima Aegis destroyers.