US secretary of defence James Mattis and South Korean defence minister Han Min-koo have reaffirmed plans to deploy the US Army's Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) system in 2017 amid concerns about North Korea's growing missile capabilities, Yonhap news agency reported on 31 January.
In a 30-minute long telephone conversation Mattis confirmed to Han that the advanced missile defence system will be placed in South Korea as scheduled, adding that the allies will maintain full readiness to counter any aggression by Pyongyang, the media outlet quoted the Ministry of National Defense (MND) in Seoul as saying.
Mattis, a retired US Marine Corps general, is set to visit South Korea from 2 to 3 February before flying to Japan.
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