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130 Korean Elite Troops to Be Deployed to UAE

Posted November. 04, 2010 10:16,   


A combined 130 Korean elite troops will be deployed to the United Arab Emirates by year’s end to teach special combat, the Defense Ministry said Wednesday.

The troops will be the first military unit deployed by Korea for the purpose of “software exports” to a country not engaged in a war rather than a U.N. peacekeeping operation.

Jang Kwang-il, chief of the defense policy office at the Defense Ministry, said Wednesday, “The government will dispatch some 130 troops of the Army’s special welfare command by year’s end after receiving parliamentary approval.”

“The UAE asked Korea to dispatch an elite special warfare unit and conduct close cooperation for training to help develop (the UAE’s) special welfare unit to the level of world-class forces.”

The Korean unit will train the UAE’s elite special military unit, conduct joint drills, and protect Korean nationals in the event of a contingency. It will be stationed in the Mideast country between next month and December 2012.

The troops will be replaced at an interval of four to six months and be stationed at the barracks of the UAE’s special welfare military school and training camps.

Jang said, “The place where the dispatched troops will be stationed is an area with no risk of combat and is relatively safe, unlike other deployments of U.N, peacekeeping units or multinational military troops.”

“In the wake of the deployment, Korea can expect more cooperation for defense exports to the UAE, the advance of Korean military veterans and professionals from the civilian sector to that country, expansion of bilateral economic cooperation, and improvement of the combat capability of Korea’s elite special welfare forces.”

He said, “All countries engaged in economic cooperation with the UAE cooperate with it in the military sector as well,” adding, “The UAE has 3,000 foreign troops from more than 10 countries stationed there, including from the U.S., Britain, France and Australia.”

A bill on the military deployment will be approved by a Cabinet meeting next Tuesday for submission to the National Assembly.