16 May 2017

News Report: Troubles Chasing US Aircraft Carriers Amid Tensions on Korean Peninsula

The US aircraft carrier Ronald Reagan heading the strike group of the US Navy cannot depart from the Japanese naval base in Yokosuka due to "an unspecified issue aboard" the USS, Stars and Stripes reported.

"While inport Yokosuka and conducting routine pre-underway checks, a material issue was identified that requires repair," the media outlet cited a Navy statement issued Monday. "There is no impact to the safety of the aircraft carrier."

Earlier this month, the USS Ronald Reagan, the flagship of the Carrier Strike Group 5, departed from its base in Yokosuka after more than five months in the port for sea trials. During the sea trials, Ronald Reagan's crew underwent multiple training and qualification exercises, as well as air, flight deck and hangar bay operations to evaluate the performance of the sailors and their departments.

The USS Ronald Reagan's return to operations was supposed to "mark a significant milestone for the forward-deployed naval forces, reaffirming the United States commitment to the region."

The Ronald Reagan Strike Group is embarking on its regularly scheduled patrol while tensions on the Korean Peninsula have escalated after several nuclear and missile tests carried out by Pyongyang.

In April, US President Donald Trump said that an "armada" was heading to the Korean Peninsula's shores. Interestingly, the US carrier group headed by the USS Carl Vinson was no stranger to troubles as well.

After it turned out that the Carl Vinson deployed to deter North Korea did not reach the Sea of Japan reportedly because the White House and the Pentagon failed to communicate effectively and was spotted near Indonesia, it was reported that it would finally reach the Korean Peninsula later.

On the armada's way to the Korean Peninsula, a F/A-18E jet based on the US Carl Vinson aircraft carrier crashed near the Philippines with the warplane's pilot ejecting safely from his cockpit. The incident took place in the Celebes Sea in the western Pacific.

On April 29, the strike group of the USS Carl Vinson finally entered the Sea of Japan. The USS Carl Vinson strike group’s Asia-Pacific patrol was extended about a month.

This story first appeared on Sputnik & is reposted here with permission.