US military exercises launched in Thailand | Eurasia Diary - ednews.net

19 February, Tuesday


US military exercises launched in Thailand

Ten days of military exercises with the US and Asian nations have started in Thailand. They come as US President Donald Trump asked South Korea to pay $500 million more for keeping US troops in South Korea.

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The opening ceremony for the annual Cobra Gold manoevers launched the biggest exercise of its kind in the Asia-Pacific region, with 29 nations taking part as participants or observers over ten days until next Thursday.

In addition to Thailand and the US, seven other nations are actively participating: Singapore, Japan, China, India, Indonesia, Malaysia and South Korea. About 4,500 US personnel, on land and sea, are taking part.

The exercises continue until February 22 and are made up of three major components: military field training, humanitarian assistance and disaster relief training.

The goals include "enhancing maritime security, preventing and mitigating emerging disease threats, and responding to large-scale natural disasters," a US statement said.

Acting head of the US diplomatic mission in Thailand, Peter Haymond, said on Tuesday at the ceremony in the northern Thai province of Phitsanulok that the aim of the exercises, first held in 1982, was to strengthen cooperation and inter-operability.

 

Deutsche Welle

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