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S Korea to pay $866.6 mil in 2014 to host U.S. troops

19 Comments

South Korea said Sunday it had agreed to pay about $866.6 million this year to keep on its soil U.S. troops who help guard against threats from North Korea.

Seoul's foreign ministry, after months of negotiation with Washington, confirmed this year's contribution of 920 billion won ($866.6 million), up 5.8% from last year.

The two allies also agreed on a maximum 4% annual increase in the amount until 2018, the ministry spokesman Cho Tai-Young told reporters.

The South and the U.S. have since 1991 shared the cost of hosting American soldiers, currently numbered at around 28,000 -- the legacy of 1950-53 Korean War.

The latest agreement -- the ninth since 1991 -- is subject to a parliamentary approval in Seoul.

"We tried to produce a reasonable result to persuade South Koreans and our lawmakers while taking into account our financial burdens as well as the conditions for stably hosting the US troops," Cho said.

The agreement came as the South girds for potential military provocations by the communist North after the shock execution of the leader Kim Jong-Un's uncle.

Kim last month purged the once-powerful Jang Song-Thaek for charges including corruption and treason in the biggest political upheaval since he took power two years ago.

Seoul's defense chief Kim Kwan-Jin as well as analysts have warned that the impoverished but nuclear-armed North may stage armed provocations early this year to cement domestic unity and rally support for Kim.

The North has for decades criticised the presence of U.S. troops stationed across the South, calling them a major hurdle for peace-building with Seoul.

Pyongyang has consistently responded with anger to South Korea-U.S. joint military exercises staged regularly below the border.

In November 2010, in the most high-profile case, the North shelled a border island, killing four South Koreans in what it called a protest against the South-U.S. military drills staged nearby.

© (c) 2014 AFP

©2024 GPlusMedia Inc.

19 Comments
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Only $800 billion?? What a bargain to keep the blood thirsty North Koreans and their Chinese masters from over running your country, me thinks! Kamsam hamnida US troops on the Korean Peninsula!!

3 ( +9 / -6 )

Frankly it's quite cheap for USD30,000/ per soldier, it's only about their pay, american taxpayers need to pay much more than this amount!

2 ( +5 / -3 )

American soldiers should be there. I wouldn't like to have such a psychotic neighbour like North Korea.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

More "protection" money!

This is becoming a good cash crop for the U.S.A.

Of course, they had nothing to do with creating the dangerous environment in the first place!

-4 ( +4 / -8 )

Well played by the Americans.. They created this environment to begin with and now they have convinced the South Korean's to pay them $800 million a year to fund America's 'interests'... Con of the century perhaps?

-4 ( +5 / -9 )

KariHaruka,

Not only South Korea, but Japan - against the wishes of the Okinawan people - is planning to build a huge superbase in Henoko.

Funded by Japanese taxpayers of course.

It's a protection racket like the one they used to play in the East end of London.

"Look after your car, mister? It's a very dangerous area. If you don't watch it, you'll come back to find your tyres and your stereo gone! Give us some money and we'll look after your car. No worries!"

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Well played by the Americans.. They created this environment to begin with and now they have convinced the South Korean's to pay them $800 million a year to fund America's 'interests'... Con of the century perhaps?

@KariHaruka - That's an interesting theory. You are probably aware that upon Korea's liberation from the Japanese Empire, the Soviets and the Americans agreed to administer one half of the country each. The Soviets influenced the North to become Communist and tried to take over the South, in what became the Korean War.

As a Korean, I thank the USA for their actions. Call me naive for believing the official line and not adopting a skeptical view of USA's motives for their involvement, but the fact is over 30 thousand Americans died in a foreign country to defend our freedom. In fact, I was deeply moved while visiting the Korean War memorial near the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington DC last year.

3 ( +7 / -4 )

Your hatred for the US is always so obvious and obnoxious, Bertie.

How much USA bashing do you have to do to feel comfortable about your homeland, Bertie? Find a new hobby, Bertie. This one is nauseating.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Con of the century perhaps?

South Koreans had two choices, pay $866.6 million or Dennis Rodman.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

America: Providing guard dogs everywhere in the world!

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Well. USA need added income beside military in Japan. It must be glad it des not have to worry to be scared of bankruptcy this year. / It can plan meddling middle east countries internal fight again. All US has to do is to instigate China and S Korea against Japan to ensure it has income

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

Cripes, can't the Chinese take over for the Americans here? Oh, wait, the Chinese are responsible for the existence of North Korea today, never mind.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

You all have never been to Siuth Korea should be ashamed!! The ROK soldiers aling with US soldiers respect each other!The DPRK knows it and the Chinese PLA know it so they dont mess with South Korea!!

2 ( +3 / -1 )

One half of the bill is being paid for by South Korea and the other half is funded by American taxpayers. As an American myself I'd rather have our standing army reduced and not have soldiers embedded in foreign countries. South Korea's economic might, ability to manufacture weapons and population greatly exceeds that of the North. If South Korea wanted to it could easily protect itself from the North but it chooses to maintain its relationship with the USA at discount prices.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

How about sending 30000 Japanese troops to USA and let USA pay the salaries and benefits of the troops ? Are we not allies ?

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

SK gotta a bargain!!

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

More "protection" money!

This is becoming a good cash crop for the U.S.A.

Of course, they had nothing to do with creating the dangerous environment in the first place!

Well played by the Americans.. They created this environment to begin with and now they have convinced the South Korean's to pay them $800 million a year to fund America's 'interests'... Con of the century perhaps?

Truly... utterly... disgusting... Apologize to the 33,700 Americans who died keeping South Korea from ending up like the North.

Profiting??? The US pays nearly 50 billion dollars in financial aid to third world countries.... am I wrong?

2 ( +3 / -1 )

More "protection" money!

This is becoming a good cash crop for the U.S.A.

Of course, they had nothing to do with creating the dangerous environment in the first place!

So you're saying they should have let the communist North take over the entire country give in to Kim Il Sung. Which also means in your eyes, everything should be free. My father was a private bodyguard for many years, he sould have protected his client for free out of the goodness of his heart. What reality are you in? Nothing's for free, that's the price you pay. You don't think the Syrians are paying the Russians? Come on now. From weapons to food, housing, maintenance etc. it all costs money.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

South Korea is paying 1/2, ( one half ), of the total cost to maintain those U.S. troops there. The USA is paying the other half. How is that a "cash crop"? It does help to subsidize a slightly larger U.S. Military but that is it. If the USA were to reduce it troops by the number they have in South Korea then it would save $866.6 million a year. Read and do the math.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

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