S. Korean presidential candidates worry about U.S. aircraft carrier's re-deployment

CNC
Added On April 11, 2017

SEOUL, April 11 (Xinhua) -- South Korean presidential candidates expressed worry about the re-deployment of a nuclear-powered U.S. aircraft carrier and its accompanying battleships near the Korean Peninsula, local media reports said on Tuesday.

The USS Carl Vinson aircraft carrier and its accompanying destroyers and cruisers moved again to the waters near the Korean Peninsula, after departing from it last month.

The Nimitz-class aircraft super-carrier had participated in the U.S.-South Korea joint military exercises, codenamed Foal Eagle, from March 19 to March 25. The joint annual springtime war game would last by the end of this month.

The re-deployment of the Carl Vinson Strike Group, which canceled a planned port visit to Australia and diverted to the Western Pacific, escalated tensions on the peninsula.

Two key South Korean presidential candidates expressed worries about the mounted tensions in the region.

Moon Jae-in of the biggest Minjoo Party said in a statement that any military action on the peninsula must never be conducted without South Korea's consent.

Moon noted that if he takes power, he will visit the United States rapidly to discuss ways to resolve the issue of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK).

A spokesman with Ahn Cheol-soo of the center-right People's Party, Moon's archrival, said the re-deployment of the U.S. aircraft carrier near the peninsula was viewed as a strong show of force against the DPRK's nuclear program.

He expressed worry about the escalated military tensions on the peninsula, adding that the DPRK's nuclear issue must be resolved in a peaceful way.

Lee Duk-haeong, spokesman for South Korea's unification ministry, said on Monday that there was nothing to worry much about the re-deployment as the U.S. had supported South Korea's DPRK policies which aim to resolve all issues peacefully.