SEOUL, Aug. 19 (Xinhua) -- South Korea and the United States are considering reducing the scale of their joint naval exercises slated for early September in a bid to avoid raising unnecessary tension in the region, local media reported Thursday citing an unnamed source.
The two allies are scheduled to stage joint naval drills off the west coast of the Korean peninsula in September as the latest show of force aimed at preventing the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) from waging further aggression.
The reported move comes after the DPRK and China protested the planned military maneuvers in the tense waters, criticizing them for raising tension in the region.
Seoul and Washington see the need to avoid unsolicited discontent in the region, with Washington planning not to deploy its aircraft carrier USS George Washington for the latest drills, according to Yonhap News Agency.
In July, South Korea and the United States held massive four-day exercises in the Yellow Sea in response to the DPRK's alleged torpedo attack in March on a South Korean warship, which killed 46 South Korean sailors. Pyongyang denies responsibility for it.