US and South Korean troops have staged a large amphibious landing exercise, storming simulated North Korean beach defences amid heightened tension and threats by the North to annihilate its enemies.
The landing and assault drills on South Korea’s east coast were part of eight weeks of joint exercises between the allies which the South has said are the largest ever.
The North has denounced the exercises as “nuclear war moves” and threatened to respond with an all-out offensive.
Tension on the Korean peninsula has been high since the North conducted its fourth nuclear test in January and followed that with a long-range rocket launch last month, triggering new UN sanctions.
About 55 US marine aircraft and 30 US and South Korean ships, including the USS Bonhomme Richard and USS Boxer, which carry AV-8B Harrier attack jets and V-22 Osprey aircraft, took part in the assault on beaches near Pohang city, the US navy said.