US is eyeing to deploy Gray Eagle unmanned attack aircraft to its military base in Gunsan city of South Korea to enhance its strike capabilities against ground targets in North Korea.
“They will be stationed at Kunsan Air Base, 180 km (112 miles) south of Seoul and would be permanently based in South Korea” United States Forces Korea spokesman Christopher Bush was quoted as saying by Channel News Asia reported today.
The system also has an endurance of 25 hours, speeds up to 167 knots (309 km/hour), can operate up to 29,000 feet (8,840 meters) and can carry multiple payloads including and four Hellfire air-to-surface missiles and four GBU-44/B Viper Strike glide bombs.
"The US Army has begun the process to dispatch a squadron, which will operate the Grey Eagle unmanned aircraft, to a US unit in Gunsan (274 kilometers south of Seoul)," an official told Yonhap news agency.
The consultations regarding the deployment were underway but provided no specific time frame. In 2017, North Korea carried out tests of four ballistic missiles, and conducted two nuclear tests and 24 missile launches last year.
The Gray Eagle was developed for the Army by General Atomics Aeronautical Systems. It is capable of carrying four Hellfire air-to-surface missiles.