South Korea signs deal to pay more for United States troops


The United States has not urged the global community to lift sanctions and has not lifted USA -specific sanctions on North Korea in response to the Punggye-ri incident, nor to the meeting between dictator Kim Jong-un and President Donald Trump in June 2018.

Yonhap said the United States had previously demanded 1.13 trillion won (US$1 billion) from South Korea.

It's unclear whether Seoul will negotiate a longer deal for next year, or whether they will up their contribution to pay for the USA military presence again.

The South Korean news agency Yonhap reported that Meari, which it described as "one of the North's propaganda outlets", insisted in a column Monday that Washington owes "corresponding practical action" to North Korea in exchange for "active and preemptive efforts" like not bombing Japan since 2017. Both were held in South Korea.

South Korean President Moon Jae-in plans to discuss the upcoming summit with Trump soon, according to a spokesman from the Blue House.

South Korea signed a provisional agreement to pay around 1.04 trillion won this year for the stationing of U.S. Forces Korea (USFK) troops here, a rise of 8.2 percent year-on-year. But a foreign ministry official in Seoul said the deal could be extended if the two sides agree.

North Korea's leader Kim Jong Un (L) with President Donald Trump at the start of their historic summit, at the Capella Hotel on Sentosa island in Singapore on June 12, 2018.

The state-run Radio Pyongyang also reportedly broadcast similar demands that the US move towards "credible steps and responds with corresponding practical action".

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About 28,500 USA troops are stationed in South Korea, where the United States has maintained a military presence since the 1950-53 Korean War.

"It's very expensive", he said on "Face the Nation" on CBS.

The next round of annual joint military exercises, called Key Resolve/Foal Eagle, is due to be held in the spring, although officials have said they won't announce a date until after the Vietnam summit.

Their first summit in Singapore last June resulted in Kim's vague commitment to "complete denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula", a term that his propaganda machine previously used when it argued it would only denuclearise after the United States withdraws its troops from South Korea.

The probability of the Olympic bid, however, relies on the state of North Korea's nuclear and ballistic program.

About 70 percent of South Korea's payment funds the salaries of some 8,700 South Korean workers who provide administrative, technical, and other services for the USA military. Situated at the epicenter of one of the world's most geopolitically volatile regions, the Korean Peninsula is of particular strategic importance to USA policy and posture across East Asia.

The U.S. State Department's senior adviser for security negotiations and agreements, Timothy Betts, met Kang before signing the agreement on behalf of the United States and told her the money represented a small but important part of South Korea's support for the alliance.

Late past year, the USA military had warned the South Korean employees on its bases that they may be put on leave from mid-April if no agreement was reached.