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Move U.S. Second Division out of Easy Range of N.K.’s Artillery

Move U.S. Second Division out of Easy Range of N.K.’s Artillery

Posted June. 05, 2003 21:45,   


As early as year’s end, Yongsan Garrison will move out of Seoul and the U.S. Second Infantry Division will be realigned to southern Seoul in two stages.

South Korea and the U.S. on Thursday held the second round of talks on policy for the future alliance at the Defense Ministry. At the meeting, the two sides agreed on the relocation of Yongsan Garrison and the realignment of the U.S. 2ID in South Korea.

They also decided to establish detailed plans on the realignment of Yongsan Garrison and the 2ID before the ROK-U.S. Security Consultative Meeting (SCM) scheduled in September. At the end of this year, some facilities at Yongsan will be returned to the Korean government and in 2004 it will start purchasing land into which Yongsan will move in Pyeongtaek and Osan, Gyeonggi Province.

However, the two allies have yet to decide the time for the realignment of the troops. In the first step, a lot of bases scattered around northern Gyeonggi Province will be united at Camp Casey in Dongducheon and Camp Cloud in Uijeongbu, and the two bases will be relocated to southern Seoul.

Thus, the USFK will be stationed at two hubs in the Pyeongtaek/Osan area and Daegu/Busan area and three bases, including one in Yongsan, the joint training center in northern Seoul, and an air force base in Gunsan, North Jeolla Province.

Cha Young-gu, director of the Ministry of Defense’s Policy Planning Bureau, said, "Even after the U.S. 2ID’s realignment is finished, U.S. soldiers will stay at the front in turns as part of a training program. This meeting was to draw a rough sketch for the realignment in American troop deployments, so at present it is difficult to say a specific time for the realignment."

However, Mr. Cha said that the Land Partnership Plan, which was supposed to be implemented by 2011 for a smooth realignment of U.S. bases scattered around the nation, would be pushed ahead with earlier than scheduled.

Along with this, South Korea and the U.S. also decided to finish establishing plans to develop military capabilities for the modernization of the alliance until the SCM in September. The two nations’ defense ministers will meet in Washington D.C. at the earliest and have the third round of talks next month.

Meanwhile, the USFK commander, Gen. Leon J. LaPorte, said MBC Radio that the two nations had decided to relocate U.S. forces in Seoul to Osan and Pyeongtaek, Gyeonggi Province.

Sang-Ho Yun ysh1005@donga.com