S. Korea launches large-scale aerial drill

7:56:00 PM
SEOUL, -- The South Korean Air Force said Thursday it has started a large-scale aerial exercise involving indigenous light attack fighter jets as part of efforts to evaluate and improve its strategic and combat capabilities.

The exercise "Soaring Eagle" kicked off Monday for a two-week run at an air base in the central city of Cheongju, 137 kilometers south of Seoul, according to the Air Force.

The biannual drill, which was inaugurated in 2008 with air-to-air and air-to-surface operations across the country, "aims to boost our capabilities of blocking enemies' surprise infiltration and destroying their key military assets," the Air Force said in a statement.

"The exercise this time mobilizes some 40 planes of nine types equipped with the most-advanced weapons system, including F-15K and KF-16 fighters, as well as 320 service members," the Air Force said. "The list also involves two FA-50s for the first time."

  As a light attack variant of the T-50 Golden Eagle supersonic trainer, the FA-50 was co-developed by Korea Aerospace Industries and U.S. defense firm Lockheed Martin and was put into service in October last year.

It is the most advanced variant of the T-50 family operated by the South Korean Air Force.

(PHOTOS) Chungcheongbuk-do Cheongju, AF. (2015. 2. 5), - Republic Of Korea Air Force Soaring Eagle Exercises. The first time  F-50 participated in the training.




Chungcheongbuk-do Cheongju, AF. (2015. 2. 5), - Republic Of Korea Air Force Soaring Eagle Exercises. The first time  F-50 participated in the training. 


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