FM visits USS Ronald Reagan aircraft carrier in Busan

Foreign Minister Park Jin visited the USS Ronald Reagan in the southeastern port city of Busan on Sunday, saying the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier’s visit to South Korea showed the “watertight” security cooperation between South Korea and the United States in the face of North Korea’s growing nuclear and missile threats, according to his ministry.

Carrier Strike Group 5, which includes the aircraft carrier, the Aegis-equipped USS Shoup destroyer and other warships, arrived Thursday at a naval base in Busan, 320 kilometers southeast of Seoul, for a five-day visit.

The visit came amid heightened tensions on the Korean Peninsula after North Korea unveiled a new “tactical nuclear attack” submarine early last month. The North has also vowed to launch a military spy satellite again this month after two failed attempts this year.

Park was given a tour of the USS Ronald Reagan by Rear Adm. Pat Hannifin, commander of Carrier Strike Group 5, and was briefed on its operations.

“As North Korea’s nuclear and missile threats advance and become more explicit than ever, the USS Ronald Reagan’s visit is a strong demonstration of the watertight security cooperation between South Korea and the United States for regional peace and stability, including the security of the Korean Peninsula,” Park said, according to his ministry.

“The enhanced regular visibility of U.S. strategic assets will give a big boost to the South Korea-U.S. alliance,” he added.

Source: Yonhap News Agency