US, Japan conducting exercises with nuclear aircraft carrier
A US nuclear aircraft carrier conducts joint exercises with Japan's self-defense force.
US nuclear-powered aircraft carrier Abraham Lincoln is conducting joint exercises with Japan's self-defense forces in the Sea of Japan, according to a report by the Japanese Kyodo news agency.
According to the report, the exercises are being conducted in the Sea of Japan in order to contain North Korea. The US destroyer Spruance and Japanese destroyer Inazuma were also present in the region.
The exercises were conducted amid fears of new missile launches by North Korea in celebration of the upcoming 110th birthday of the founding of Korean leader Kim Il Sung.
In March, the US also conducted training exercises involving the USS Abraham Lincoln west of the Korean Peninsula.
North Korean news agency Yonhap quoted on Monday sources as saying that US nuclear-powered aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln will access the international waters of the East Sea this week as a "show of force" movement to fend off any possible North Korean provocations.
The aircraft carrier along with a strike group will stay in the sea for about five days, Yonhap reported, adding that it will be the first incident of its kind since November 2017.
The news agency quoted the spokesman for US Forces Korea, Lee Peters, as saying that "as a matter of operational security," he refuses to comment on the matter.
Japan receives unofficial invitation to join AUKUS
Japan has received an invitation, though unofficial, to join AUKUS - tripartite military cooperation and alliance between Australia, the United States, and the United Kingdom.
The latest of AUKUS' news is their development of hypersonic missiles. Other than the strategic benefit that Japan can offer to the alliance, it can also offer its top-tier standards in cyberspace, quantum tech, and artificial intelligence. Such tools are to be used in developing hypersonic weapons, electronic warfare, and beyond.
Opinions regarding joining the alliance vary. Some lawmakers in the Japanese government support joining the alliance to counter China in Asia, while others do not believe it is feasible for the reason that Japan already coordinates between the three countries, according to Sankei Shimbun. Furthermore, Japan will not be able to participate in some of the projects, namely nuclear submarines.