U.S. soldiers stationed in South Korea have recently conducted an exercise aimed at destroying North Korea’s weapons of mass destruction (WMDs) by practicing a ship-to-shore air assault from a South Korean warship, the infantry division said Thursday.

The U.S. Army forces carried out the exercise, called “Warrior Strike 7” at Camp Stanley in Euijeongbu, just north of Seoul, and the Rodriguez Live Fire Complex near the inter-Korean border, it said.

“The exercise is designed to enhance the battalions’ skills in counter-WMD operations,” according to a Facebook account on the 2nd Infantry Division. It did not reveal when the exercise took place.

The drill involved the Dokdo, the South Korean warship, and was the first ship-to-shore air exercise mobilizing a South Korean naval vessel, it said.

Aboard a helicopter, U.S. soldiers practiced an infiltration into a mock facility of the enemy in a bid to strengthen their capability to destroy the WMD in a speedy manner, it said. South Korean servicemen are known to have taken part in the drill.

The move came as North Korea’s nuclear and missile programs are advancing, posing a threat to peace and security on the divided peninsula.

North Korea on Sunday fired a new intermediate-range ballistic missile which it claims can carry a heavy nuclear warhead, insisting that the U.S. mainland is within its striking means.

About 28,500 American troops are stationed in South Korea as a legacy of the 1950-53 Korean War, which ended in a truce, not a peace treaty.

Source: Yonhap