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South Korea has confirmed its intention to deploy an additional 20 F-35A fighter aircraft by 2028 to further bolster its aerial strike capabilities amid concerns over Pyongyang’s rapid military buildup and growing missile arsenal.

The country’s Defense Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA) said that the Defense Project Promotion Committee has endorsed a “basic” strategy — subject to adjustments following a feasibility study and other procedures — to acquire the multirole stealth fighters from the United States under a 3.9 trillion won ($2.9 billion) program expected to begin in 2023 and be completed five years later.

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