Washington and Seoul failed to renew an agreement on sharing the cost of maintaining a US military presence in South Korea amid a standoff between the two sides over President Donald Trump’s demand for more South Korean contribution.
The expiry of the cost-sharing deal has come at a time when the North Korean leader, Kim Jong-un on Tuesday urged South Korea to “completely halt” military exercises with the US. “Now that the two Koreas (are) on the path (to) peace and prosperity, we insist that joint military exercises with outside forces should no longer be allowed and deployment of war weapons such as outside strategic assets should be completely stopped,” Kim said.
Tensions with the North was one the main reasons for the US to base its forces in South Korea but now with detente in the air, Seoul no longer sees the US presence as vital for its security.
The agreementl had required South Korea to pay $830 million per year for the cost of maintaining some 28,500 American troops stationed in the country. The US and South Korean officials failed to reach consensus on splitting the bill of the American soldiers stationed on the peninsula during the ninth round of bargaining in November last year.
The negotiations for the renewal of the contract are in a deadlock over US President Donald Trump’s request for a 50-percent increase in South Korea’s contribution, according to a report by the Wall Street Journal.
According to the report, Trump is pushing for between $1.2 and $1.6 billion per year, but South Korean President Moon Jae-in has been resisting the demand. During the latest round of talks last month, American negotiators suggested signing a one year contract, but Seoul is said to have rejected the idea.
Trump has reportedly called on Seoul to cover the cost of deploying new aircraft carriers and bombers. The US has already deployed two Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) launchers to South Korea.
In April 2017, Trump had demanded $1 billion from South Korea for the deployment of THAAD and had said that the trade pact between the two countries was unacceptable. Seoul rejected the demand.
The South Korean Army will launch a new research institute on Artificial Intelligence (AI) later this week. The armed services will open the AI Research and Development Center under its Training and Doctrine Command on Tuesday, the Army was quoted as stating by Yonhap Moday
South Korean Defense Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA) has approved plan to develop six Aegis- equipped destroyer for an estimated cost of $6 billion. The Defense Project Promotion Committee has decided on the Korea Destroyer Next Generation (KDDX) project, under which the country will locally develop the destroyer by the late 2020s with a budget of around 1
South Korea has completed preliminary design of a new 3,000-ton Changbogo III-class Batch-II submarine that features capabilities for longer-duration and speedier underwater operations. Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering Co
The South Korean Army has resumed operation of its Surion choppers on Monday, months after they were grounded following the crash of the MUH-1 marine variant of KUH-1 Surion helicopter in July. An MUH-1 Marineon crashed at a military airport in the southeastern city of Pohang on July 17, killing five of the six Marines aboard and injuring the other
Hanwha Systems will manufacture 12 air defense Command, Control and Alert (C2A) systems for the South Korean Military in a contract worth 32.9 billion won (US$29
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