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Members of the 25th Fighter Squadron ready A-10 Thunderbolt IIs for night operations Monday, Nov. 2, 2015, during Vigilant Ace 16 at Osan Air Base, South Korea. Vigilant Ace is a peninsula-wide readiness exercise focused on strengthening the U.S./South Korea alliance.

Members of the 25th Fighter Squadron ready A-10 Thunderbolt IIs for night operations Monday, Nov. 2, 2015, during Vigilant Ace 16 at Osan Air Base, South Korea. Vigilant Ace is a peninsula-wide readiness exercise focused on strengthening the U.S./South Korea alliance. (Amber Grimm/U.S. Air Force)

Members of the 25th Fighter Squadron ready A-10 Thunderbolt IIs for night operations Monday, Nov. 2, 2015, during Vigilant Ace 16 at Osan Air Base, South Korea. Vigilant Ace is a peninsula-wide readiness exercise focused on strengthening the U.S./South Korea alliance.

Members of the 25th Fighter Squadron ready A-10 Thunderbolt IIs for night operations Monday, Nov. 2, 2015, during Vigilant Ace 16 at Osan Air Base, South Korea. Vigilant Ace is a peninsula-wide readiness exercise focused on strengthening the U.S./South Korea alliance. (Amber Grimm/U.S. Air Force)

Staff Sgt.Woodrow Walkup and Senior Airman Kameron Whitener, 25th Aircraft Maintenance Unit weapons load crew team members, prepare to load 30-millimeter rounds onto an A-10 Thunderbolt II Sunday, Nov. 1, 2015, during the Vigilant Ace 16 exercise on Osan Air Base, South Korea. The A-10 is a highly accurate and survivable weapons-delivery platform, capable of carrying up to 16,000 pounds of munitions, including the 30-millimeter cannon that can penetrate tanks.

Staff Sgt.Woodrow Walkup and Senior Airman Kameron Whitener, 25th Aircraft Maintenance Unit weapons load crew team members, prepare to load 30-millimeter rounds onto an A-10 Thunderbolt II Sunday, Nov. 1, 2015, during the Vigilant Ace 16 exercise on Osan Air Base, South Korea. The A-10 is a highly accurate and survivable weapons-delivery platform, capable of carrying up to 16,000 pounds of munitions, including the 30-millimeter cannon that can penetrate tanks. (Kristin High/U.S. Air Force)

Senior Airman Kameron Whitener and Airman 1st Class Brandon Jones, 25th Aircraft Maintenance Unit weapons load crew team members, prepare to load 30-millimeter rounds onto an A-10 Thunderbolt II Sunday, Nov. 1, 2015, during the Vigilant Ace 16 exercise at Osan Air Base, South Korea. Each team has three airmen who are all responsible for different portions of the load. The one-man is the supervisor, the two-man is responsible for tools and aircraft preparation and the three-man is responsible for driving the jammer and munitions preparation.

Senior Airman Kameron Whitener and Airman 1st Class Brandon Jones, 25th Aircraft Maintenance Unit weapons load crew team members, prepare to load 30-millimeter rounds onto an A-10 Thunderbolt II Sunday, Nov. 1, 2015, during the Vigilant Ace 16 exercise at Osan Air Base, South Korea. Each team has three airmen who are all responsible for different portions of the load. The one-man is the supervisor, the two-man is responsible for tools and aircraft preparation and the three-man is responsible for driving the jammer and munitions preparation. (Kristin High/U.S. Air Force)

The Air Force-led Vigilant Ace 16, an exercise bringing roughly 16,000 U.S. servicemembers and South Korean forces together for a week of combat training, kicked off Sunday at Osan Air Base.

Along with Osan’s F-16 and A-10 fighter jets, participants include Air Force cargo planes, the Marines’ EA-6B Prowler from Iwakuni, Japan, and several varieties of South Korean aircraft, according to an Air Force statement.

Vigilant Ace is a regularly scheduled exercise meant to increase familiarity between the two nations’ militaries, according to a 7th Air Force statement issued Tuesday.

The United States and South Korea maintain an alliance that arose out of the Korean War armistice of 1953. About 28,500 U.S. servicemembers are stationed in South Korea.

news@stripes.com

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