Ronald Reagan aircraft carrier set to strengthen US-South Korea defense ties

Credit: US Navy

The nuclear-powered USS Ronald Reagan aircraft carrier is set to dock at the South Korean port of Busan on October 12, 2023. 

The move comes as Seoul warns of escalating threats from North Korea, particularly in light of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un’s recent visit to Russia, which sparked international concerns. 

According to South Korea’s defense ministry, the carrier’s presence in Busan will bolster the military posture of both South Korea and the United States, preparing them for any potential provocations from North Korea.  

During its stay in Busan, the carrier strike group plans to conduct friendly drills with the South Korean Navy and leave on October 16, 2023. 

The carrier’s visit comes after the United States pledged in the Washington Declaration, issued in April 2023 by President Yoon Suk Yeol and US Vice President Joe Biden, to improve the “regular visibility” of its strategic military assets, as reported by First Post.  

The USS Ronald Reagan (CVN-76) is a Nimitz-class, nuclear-powered supercarrier that was commissioned in 2003 and can carry about 60 aircraft. The 1,092-foot vessel, with the motto “Peace Through Strength,” has already been deployed several times to the Pacific and Middle East.  

This is also not the first time the aircraft carrier has been stationed in Busan. In September 2022, it joined other military warships at the same port in a show of force aimed at sending a stern message to North Korea. 

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