WASHINGTON (AP) -- The U.S. is sending an additional Army combat force of 800 soldiers to South Korea with tanks and armored troop carriers.
A brief Pentagon announcement said the 1st Battalion, 12th Cavalry Regiment from the 1st Cavalry Division at Fort Hood, Texas, will deploy to two locations in South Korea on Feb. 1.
A Pentagon spokesman, Army Col. Steve Warren, said the increase in troop strength and firepower had been in the planning stages for more than a year and is part of a "rebalance" of U.S. military power toward the Asia-Pacific region.
The U.S. already has about 28,500 troops in South Korea as an expression of commitment to its defense against North Korean aggression. An armistice, but not a peace treaty, halted the 1950-1953 Korean War.