US Army secretary says US-South Korea war games to proceed

JOHOR BAHRU: US Army Secretary Eric Fanning says annual war games between the United States and South Korea will go ahead next month, despite North Korea's warning of a "vicious" showdown if the military drills proceed.

On Thursday, North Korea's top diplomat for US affairs said that the nature of the maneuvers has become openly aggressive, and that Pyongyang is ready for war. North Korea typically responds to the drills with tough talk and threats of retaliation.

Fanning, who was in Malaysia as part of a regional tour, rebutted the North's claim. He said Saturday that the U.S. has conducted military drills with South Korea for decades, and that "these exercises contribute to stability, they don't compete with stability."