South Korean Media: US B-1B Bombers to Fly Over Peninsula

A B-1B Lancer strategic bomber of the U.S. flies over Korea flanked by South Korea's fighter jets in this undated file

A B-1B Lancer strategic bomber of the U.S. flies over Korea flanked by South Korea's fighter jets in this undated file

Li Jie, a Chinese military expert based in Beijing, said the announcement was targeting the United States and South Korea.

The exercise runs from December 4-8 and includes 12,000 US personnel. In addition, ten fighters F-35B will take part in joint exercises with the U.S. air bases in Japan.

The drills featured more than 230 South Korean and USA military planes, including six F-22 air superiority fighters and about 18 F-35 aircraft, the most advanced planes in the United States military and arguably in the world.

An F-22 Raptor participating in the massive US and South Korean air force drills taking place from December 4 through 8 experienced a technical malfunction after landing and had to be towed off its runway to the hangar, Stars and Stripes reported Monday. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Franklin R. Ramos) Maintainers from the 25th Fighter Squadron prepare an A-10 Thunderbolt II aircraft for live weapons loading during exercise Vigilant Ace 18 at Osan Air Base, Republic of Korea, Dec. 2, 2017. South Korea has deployed 90 fighter jets, including its F-15 and FA-50 fighters.

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U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley suggested that countries around the world cut ties with the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, including trade links and the expulsion of DPRK workers, as the Trump administration promised to impose new sanctions on the country for its latest intercontinental ballistic missile launch. Dubbed Vigilant Ace, the bellicose exercises will last until next Friday, according to Reuters.

The North has warned that the drills could push the Korean Peninsula to "the brink of nuclear war". The exercises will involve all variety of aircraft, from reconnaissance planes to fighter jets, in joint operation with surface-to-air missiles.

A South Korean defense ministry official was unable to immediately verify the Yonhap report about the U.S. B-1B Lancer bombers taking part in the drills on Wednesday.

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