US, South Korea to draw up joint nuclear defence guideline against North Korean threat -Yonhap

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SEOUL (Reuters) – The United States and South Korea plan to draw up joint guidelines on nuclear defence strategy by the middle of next year and establish an integrated system to deter North Korea’s nuclear weapons, Yonhap news agency said on Saturday.

Washington and Seoul have decided to complete a comprehensive guideline by next year on how to contain and respond to Pyongyang’s nuclear threat together, Yonhap reported, citing Kim Tae-hyo, South Korea’s deputy national security adviser speaking to reporters in the U.S.

The guideline is expected to include methods of sharing sensitive information related to North Korea’s nuclear weapons, the consultation process in the event of a nuclear crisis, and real-time communication channels between the two countries’ leaders, it said.

The U.S. and South Korea are also expected to include nuclear operation exercises in next year’s joint military drills, Yonhap said.

North Korea may test-launch an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) this month, which is a nuclear threat regardless of its range because it can carry a nuclear warhead, Kim had said on Friday.

North Korea has developed and tested a range of ballistic missiles that can reach targets in South Korea, Japan, and the U.S. mainland.

(Reporting by Joyce Lee; Editing by Sandra Maler)

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