|Rockwell B-1 Lancer (Image: Wiki Commons)|
By Lee Chi-dong
SEOUL, June 20 (Yonhap) -- Two U.S. long-range strategic bombers will train with South Korea's fighter jets over the peninsula later Tuesday as part of a regular combined exercise, defense officials said.
"Our Air Force plans to hold a joint drill with two B-1Bs in the sky of the Korean Peninsula today," Lt. Col. Kim Sung-duk, a public relations officer of the South Korean Air Force, told reporters.
The B-1B Lancers are scheduled to fly over Korea for a few hours along with two F-15K fighter jets, he added.
He pointed out the allies have regularly conducted such a joint air training.
A source said the bombers, a key strategic asset of the U.S. forces in the Asia-Pacific region, will carry out mock bombing practice at the Pilsung Range in the eastern province of Gangwon.
The U.S. Pacific Air Forces (PACAF) would not talk in public about the issue apparently before the end of the bombers' mission.
"For operational security reasons, we will not discuss potential operations we plan to conduct with our allies," a PACAF official said.
The sortie of the U.S. bombers based in Guam comes after the reported death of a U.S. college student released from North Korea in a coma after 17 months of detention.
Otto Warmbier, a 22-year-old University of Virginia student, died at a Cincinnati hospital on Monday (local time), according to his family.
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