The U.S. military has started moving parts of the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) anti-missile defense system into a planned deployment site in South Korea, Reuters reported Tuesday, citing the South Korean Yonhap news agency.
The United States and South Korea agreed last year to deploy THAAD in response to the threat of missile launches by North Korea. China is against the move, saying it will do little to deter the North while destabilizing the regional security balance.
Trailer trucks carrying parts of the THAAD system entered the site on what had been a golf course in the county of Seongju in a southern region of South Korea, Yonhap news agency and YTN television reported.
South Korean defense ministry officials and U.S. military officials could not immediately be reached for confirmation, according to Reuters.
The United States began moving the first elements of the advanced missile defense system into South Korea in early March after the North test-launched four ballistic missiles.
North Korea's military has in the past threatened a "physical response" if the United States and South Korea deploy the advanced missile defense system to the Korean peninsula.
North Korea has continued to conduct nuclear and missile tests in violation of UN Security Council sanctions.