Washington (CNN)The US Navy is moving the USS Ronald Reagan aircraft carrier to the Korean Peninsula where it will conduct dual-carrier training exercises with the USS Carl Vinson amid heightened tensions in the region, two defense officials told CNN.
The move comes just days after North Korea demonstrated a significant leap forward in their missile program after launching a projectile that achieved “successful” controlled reentry into the earth’s lower atmosphere rather than falling back to the surface, according to a preliminary US intelligence analysis, two US officials tell CNN.
After completing a maintenance period and sea trials in Yokosuka, Japan, the USS Ronald Reagan departed for the Korean Peninsula on Tuesday, according to the Navy.
“Coming out of a long in-port maintenance period we have to ensure that Ronald Reagan and the remainder of the strike group are integrated properly as we move forward,” Rear Adm. Charles Williams said in a press release. Once it arrives in the region, the carrier will conduct a variety of training exercises but primarily focus on certifying its ability to safely launch and recover aircraft, the service said.
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