PSPD l People's Solidarity for Participatory Democracy
[Statement] Stop the ROK-U.S. Air Force Exercise, Max Thunder.
- 2018.05.17 (16:57:33)
Stop the ROK-U.S. Air Force Exercise, Max Thunder.
It is hard to understand that the two countries will continue the joint military exercises as planned.
Respect and implement the Panmunjeom Declaration, and stop the military exercise!
On May 16th, North Korea has made an announcement to postpone the high-level meeting between North and South Korea while blaming of the ‘Max Thunder,’ which is a joint military exercise between South Korea and U.S. It is significantly regretful that the first high-level meeting between the two Koreas after the Panmunjeom Declaration has suddenly been postponed. Shortly after achieving a historical agreement on ceasing any hostile acts in the Korean peninsula, it is hard to be convinced that the South Korea and U.S. are proceeding an aggressive military training aiming for the North Korea.
Although it is said that B-52, a strategic bomber, has not taken part in the exercise after an emergency meeting between the defense minister Young-moo Song and U.S. Forces Korea Commander General Vincent K. Brooks, the Ministry of Defense revealed that the military exercise ‘will be continued as planned.’ Ahead of the high-level meeting and the North Korea-U.S. summit, any military exercises must be stopped to fuel the dialogues and negotiations; not to mention, building trust is the most important. PSPD urge to stop the joint military exercise Max Thunder.
Including F-22 stealth fighter aircraft, the Max Thunder exercise is an aggressive military exercise which commences pre-emptive strikes and precision strikes towards some core facilities. It is known that eight F-22s have also participated in this exercise, which is unusual. This may seem to be a military threat to the North Korea for sure. Further, it violates an article in the Panmunjeom Declaration which notes “South and North Korea agreed to completely cease all hostile acts against each other in every domain, including land, air and sea, that are the source of military tension and conflict.”
As the high-level inter-Korea meeting has been postponed, such military exercise can trigger conflicts any time. The North Korea not only ceased launching the intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) and nuclear tests but also it has revealed that the Punggye-ri nuclear test site will be shut down. We cannot emphasize more that taking measures to build confidence instead of threatening acts is the only way to continue this newly established peaceful atmosphere. We once again urge to both South Korea and the U.S. governments to stop the Max Thunder exercise so that they can show respect and willingness for the Panmunjeom Declaration. Also, the high-level inter-Korea meeting must be held without delay.
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