The Japanese Self Defense Force and third division U.S. Marines, took part in a live-fire Joint Exercise

In the Northern Japanese city of Eniwa, Hokkaido, as part of Northern Viper 17 – the largest-scale Military Drill to be held between the two countries.

The exercise was also the first to be held in Hokkaido, as an effort to strengthen the U.S.-Japan alliance by training together on unfamiliar ground.

Although the drills are not related to the latest tension on the Korean Peninsula, it is taking place as unease between North Korea and the U.S. Are escalating and with U.S. Troops based in Okinawa, where the bulk of U.S. Forces in the region are based.

The 18-day live fire exercise which include Rocket Artillery drills and live-fire operations, will run through august 28 and will involve 3,500 troops.