USS Ronald Reagan, a Nimitz-class nuclear-powered supercarrier, leaves from its home port in Yokosuka, south of Tokyo. Kyodo via Reuters

Japan’s Asahi Shimbun is reporting that a US strike group led by the carrier USS Ronald Reagan is heading back to Korean waters at the request of South Korea’s government.

The Reagan, which is based at Yokosuka in Japan, will reportedly be deployed for a US-South Korea exercise in October as muscle flexing continues to intensify around the Korean Peninsula.

South Korea’s Defense Ministry disclosed the plan in a report submitted to the National Assembly on September 18. Seoul is said to have asked Washington for the inclusion of the nuclear-powered Reagan in the joint exercise following North Korea’s nuclear test on September 3.

It would be the first dispatch of a US carrier near Korea since two US strike groups were deployed in the Sea of Japan around June.

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