The U.S. is weighing a plan to deploy an advanced missile-defense system in South Korea, as the Pentagon begins a new push this week to expand cooperation in Asia to counter the threat of North Korean missiles, defense officials said.
According to the Wall Street Journal, the U.S. has conducted a site survey in South Korea for possible locations for a Terminal High-Altitude Area Defense battery, or Thaad, but no final decisions have been made to deploy the system, the officials said.
The system is designed to intercept short, medium and intermediate missiles. Last year, in the face of provocations from North Korea, the U.S. deployed one such system to Guam to protect U.S. bases there.
Deploying a Thaad system to South Korea could represent an important incentive to encourage Seoul to cooperate more fully with the U.S. and Japan in a planned regional missile defense system.