The Pentagon’s second-ranking officer has said that the United States is considering plans to deploy more regional missile systems in the Pacific.
Adm. James A. Winnefeld Jr. referred on Tuesday to a US Army battery manning an advanced missile system deployed last year in Guam and said there is the possibility that Washington would make similar moves in the future.
Winnefeld said such moves are meant to counter any possible threats from North Korea and in the face of shrinking budgets, the US will increasingly rely on its allies in the region to protect themselves.
“There it remains, readily deployable if necessary to somewhere else in the world if needed, but in the meantime defending US soil from potential threats,” he said, referring to the missile system in Guam.
“And with the unpredictability of the North Korean regime, we may find ourselves doing more of this sort of thing in the future elsewhere in the region,” the US admiral added.
Meanwhile, China has announced its opposition to the possible deployment of US missile systems in the region, saying Washington must understand the legitimate concerns of the countries in the region.
“We believe that the deployment of an anti-missile system in this region will not help maintain stability and strategic balance in this region,” said China’s foreign ministry spokesman Qin Gang.
“We hope that the US will take into full consideration of the legitimate concerns by relevant countries in the region,” he added.