US missile launchers and other equipment needed to set up a controversial missile defence system have arrived in South Korea, the US and South Korean militaries said on March 7, 2017.
This is a day after North Korea test-launched four ballistic missiles into the ocean near Japan.
The plans to deploy the Terminal High-Altitude Area defence system, or THAAD, by the end of this year have angered not only North Korea, but also China and Russia, which see the system's powerful radars as a security threat.
The system is defensive and not meant to be a threat to Beijing or Moscow.
The US military said in a statement that THAAD is meant to intercept and destroy short and medium range ballistic missiles during the last part of their flights.
Some South Korean liberal presidential candidates have said that the security benefits of having THAAD would be curtailed by worsened relations with neighbours China and Russia.
China's condemnation of South Korean plans to deploy THAAD has triggered protests against South Korean retail giant, Lotte, which agreed to provide one of its golf courses in southern South Korea as the site of THAAD.
The South Korean government also raised worries about a reported ban on Chinese tour groups visiting the country.
North Korea recently fired four ballistic missiles in an apparent protest against ongoing US-South Korean military drills that it views as an invasion rehearsal.
The missiles flew about 1,000 kilometres (620 miles) on average, three of them landing in waters that Japan claims as its exclusive economic zone