South Korea and the United States have planned to hold a joint naval drill next week amid growing tension between the South and North Korea.
The three-day-long exercise involving a US nuclear submarine and other warships will begin on Monday in the Sea of Japan (East Sea) off the South Korean port city of Pohang, Yonhap news agency reported.
"It will include anti-submarine and anti-air trainings and maritime maneuverings," a military official was quoted as saying in the report.
In recent years, the US and South Korea have conducted several massive joint sea and air drills in waters east of the Korean Peninsula.
The upcoming joint drill comes as South Korean President Lee Myung-bak has warned North Korea of ‘serious consequences’ if Pyongyang goes ahead with its planned high-level nuclear test.
North Korea threatened on January 26 to carry out a nuclear test in defiance of a new round of UN sanctions against its December rocket launch. Pyongyang said the test was the “demand of people.”
On January 25, North Korea also warned of “strong physical countermeasures” against South Korea if Seoul “directly participates in the so-called UN sanctions.”
Pyongyang said it would launch more long-range rockets and carry out the nuclear test aimed at its “arch-enemy the United States.”
On January 22, the UN Security Council adopted a resolution to impose new sanctions on North Korea for launching a long-range rocket on December 12, 2012.
In November 2010, the North and South exchanged artillery fire in the Yellow Sea border island of Yeonpyeong. The two blamed each other for the launch of the border fight.