The US Navy has deployed Aegis-equipped destroyer to Japan on Tuesday, as part of the navy's strategy to furnish the Indo-Pacific region with the most advanced and capable defense units.
The destroyer USS Milius joined the U.S. Navy's 7th fleet, which is stationed at Yokosuka naval base about 45km south of Tokyo. USS Milius is the 13th U.S. warship to join the base in Yokosuka, after the destroyer USS Fitzgerald left for maintenance due to severe damage caused from a collision with a merchant ship.
Its arrival was a day later than expected due to "weather and other operational considerations," said the navy in a statement.
The deployment of the Milius to Japan was delayed by almost a year so it could undergo upgrades to its Aegis air defense system to enhance its ability to detect and target missiles.
Armed with missiles designed to shoot down warheads in space, the Milius will be part of a naval destroyer force that would be the first U.S. line of defense against any long-range ballistic missiles fired at it by North Korea.
The Arleigh Burke class ship measures 153.9m, and displaces roughly 8,230 tons. There are approximately 300 officers and enlisted men and women onboard USS Milius.