U.S. mulls dispatching 2 aircraft carriers to Korean Peninsula

SEOUL, Aug. 2:(Xinhua) The United States was mulling dispatching two aircraft carriers to the Korean Peninsula in an apparent show of force following the Democratic Peoples Republic of Korea (DPRK)'s test-launch of what it called an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM), South Korea's Yonhap news agency reported Wednesday.

An unidentified South Korean government source was quoted as saying the military authorities of South Korea and the U.S. had considered the mobilization of the U.S. aircraft carrier to the peninsula for the joint annual war games, codenamed Ulchi Freedom Guardian (UFG).

The mobilization date would be moved up, before the computer-assisted simulation exercise that was scheduled to kick off on Aug. 2: 1, according to the source.

The two U.S. aircraft carriers to be mobilized would reportedly be USS Carl Vinson and USS Ronald Reagan aircraft carrier strike groups, which were sent to the waters near the peninsula in late May.
The source was quoted as saying that reviews were underway over the dispatch of two U.S. aircraft carriers and an undefined number of U.S. nuclear-powered submarine in the third week of this month, before the joint U.S.-South Korea war game kicks off.

The mulling of the dispatch followed the DPRK's test-firing last week the ICBM that flew about 1,000 km and was lofted as high as over 3,700 km. It was an advanced version of Hwasong-14 that traveled 933 km at a maximum altitude of 2,802 km at the July 4 test-launch.

The source was quoted as saying the mobilization of the two U.S. supercarriers would have the meaning of issuing a strong warning against the DPRK to deter any further provocation, describing the upcoming UFG war game as a high-intensity joint drill to show force against the DPRK in waters near the Korean Peninsula. The DPRK has denounced the U.S.-South Korea war game as a dress rehearsal for northward invasion.