The aircraft carrier Ronald Reagan is underway for patrols in the Asia-Pacific region amid mounting tensions with North Korea.
The carrier departed its homeport at Yokosuka Naval Base on Tuesday and will likely patrol the region for several months,
according to Star and Stripes
. Typical carrier deployments last anywhere from six to eight months and include accompanying destroyers, cruisers and an undisclosed submarine presence.
The deployment comes amid increased tensions with North Korea following a ballistic missile test Sunday. If the Ronald Reagan made any moves toward the Korean Peninsula, it would be the second carrier in the region, joining the carrier Carl Vinson. The White House has not yet ruled out military intervention against North Korea.
Additionally, the Ronald Reagan is underway in the Asia-Pacific without a firm policy from the Trump administration on territorial disputes with China in the South China Sea.
The carrier’s actions in the Western Pacific will give a glimpse into the White House’s intentions in the region
“Countries in the region are still wanting reassurance that something is replacing the Obama ‘rebalance,’” Carl Thayer, a regional security consultant and professor emeritus at the University of New South Wales in Australia, told Stars and Stripes.