On May 2, Pentagon spokesman Brig. Gen. Pat Ryder confirmed that a U.S. Ohio-class nuclear-armed ballistic missile submarine will, for the first time since the 1980s, make a visit to South Korea.
The visit is part of the bolstered extended deterrence consequent to the Washington Declaration signed by American President Joe Biden and South Korean leader Yoon Suk-yeol on April 26 — the 70th anniversary of their two countries' bilateral alliance.
The agreement stipulates the U.S. will “make its deterrence more visible through the regular deployment of strategic assets” to South Korea and the establishment of a new Nuclear Consultative Group to facilitate greater South Korean input into how Washington prepares for threat contingencies on the Korean Peninsula. This was the price demanded by and paid to South Korea for staying inside the global nuclear nonproliferation regime.