SEOUL, Feb. 2 (Xinhua) -- U.S. Defense Secretary James Mattis arrived in South Korea on Thursday afternoon on his first overseas trip since he took office about two weeks earlier.

Mattis first went to the headquarters of U.S. Forces Korea (USFK) in central Seoul, where he was briefed by USFK commander Vincent Brooks on security situations on the Korean Peninsula, including the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK)'s possible launch of a long-range ballistic rocket, according to local media reports.

Mattis is scheduled to pay a courtesy call later in the day to South Korean Prime Minister Hwang Kyo-ahn who is serving as acting president following the impeachment of President Park Geun-hye. After that he will pay a visit to top presidential security advisor Kim Kwan-jin.

Mattis and his counterpart Han Min-koo will hold talks on Friday morning at the South Korean defense ministry's headquarters. Before the bilateral dialogue, Mattis will pay a visit to South Korean Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se.

Mattis is also scheduled to visit Japan for talks with his Japanese counterpart Tomomi Inada after wrapping up schedules here.