South Korea and the United States kicked off annual joint military exercises on Saturday amid angry protests by North Korea, which denounced the maneuvers as preparations for a pre-emptive nuclear attack on the communist country.
About 25,000 US troops and an undisclosed number of South Korean soldiers are participating in the weeklong exercises, dubbed RSOI and Foal Eagle. The maneuvers involve a computer-simulated war game with field drills aimed at improving American and South Korean forces' defense capabilities, according to the US military.
"The purpose of the drill is defensive," said Kim Yong-kyu, a spokesman for the US military command in Seoul.
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