Friday, September 5, 2014

US, S. Korea set up wartime unit to destroy North's nukes: report

US, S. Korea set up wartime unit to destroy North's nukes: report: South Korea said Thursday it would create a joint military unit with the United States, as a report suggested the contingent would target North Korea's weapons of mass destruction if a full-scale conflict broke out.

The mechanised unit led by a US major general will be set up in the first half of next year, the South's defence ministry said, as part of elaborate preparations for any future war between the two Koreas.

"It will be the first combined field combat unit to carry out wartime operations," a defence ministry spokesman said without elaborating on its mission.

He declined to confirm a Yonhap news agency report that its remit would include eliminating weapons of mass destruction in the nuclear-armed North if war breaks out.

The ministry said the contingent would have a joint office of US and South Korean staff in Uijeongbu, north of Seoul, where the US 2nd Infantry Division guards a strategically important area as a deterrent to an invasion by North Korea.

In the event of an all-out conflict, a mechanised South Korean brigade would join forces with the US division, which is armed with helicopters and other advanced weapons, it said.