Britain’s royal air force deployed Eurofighter Typhoons, four in total, to South Korea this week. File Photo by Carlos Menendez San Juan/Flickr
SEOUL, Nov. 8 (UPI) -- Britain's royal air force teamed up with the United States and South Korea in a joint training exercise in November.
The drill is ongoing and marks the first time British pilots are flying with U.S. and South Korean airmen, South Korean television network KBS reported Tuesday.
The drill "Invincible Shield" is being held as a demonstration of a strong commitment to deter threats originating from North Korea, and is intended to improve interoperability among the air forces, according to an official statement.
Eurofighter Typhoons, four in total, arrived at Osan Air Base in Pyeongtaek, about 40 miles south of Seoul, Yonhap reported.
Other planes include the Voyager tanker aircraft, the C-17 Globemaster III transport aircraft and about 200 British airmen.
A total of 16 fighter jets, including the F-15K and F-16, were deployed on Tuesday. The combat planes trained in precision strikes against enemy military facilities and command centers, and in intercepting large-scale aircraft attacks, according to KBS.
"This exercise is helping to deepen further the relationship between the [South Korea] air force and the royal air force, and I have taken enormous pride from witnessing our air forces join together to enhance even further cooperation between our countries," said RAF's Chief of the Air Staff Stephen Hillier.
The exercise also marks the first time British airmen are being deployed to the peninsula since the 1950-53 Korean War.
Tensions have increased in the region in 2016 with an unprecedented rise in North Korea provocations.
The strained relations have raised concerns about North Korea regime stability and the responses needed in an emergency scenario.
On Tuesday U.S. 8th Army Commander Lt. Gen. Thomas Vandal told South Korean students at Seoul Cyber University the U.S.-South Korea alliance is prepared for Korean unification, according to local news network YTN.
The alliance is ready to deal with all situations, Vandal said.
North Korea has conducted 2 nuclear tests this year and has test-fired dozens of ballistic missiles.