SEOUL, July 21 (Xinhua) -- Top diplomats and defense officials from South Korea and the United States are set to hold unprecedented security talks on Wednesday to reaffirm their military alliance amid heightened tension on the Korean peninsula following the sinking of a South Korean warship.
The so-called "two plus two" security talks, the first of its kind to be held between South Korea and the United States, will be joined by U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates and the South Korean foreign and defense ministers.
Gates, who arrived in Seoul on Monday, finalized details of joint military drills with the defense minister Kim Tae-young during Tuesday's meeting. The first joint exercise involving the U. S. aircraft carrier USS George Washington will come July 25 in waters off the east coast of the Korean peninsula, and is meant to deliver a "clear message" to the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK), they said.
The inaugural security talks come after the United Nations Security Council condemned attacks in March on the South Korean warship Cheonan.