Article V of the agreement states that the United States will bear all costs associated with the maintenance of U.S. troops, with the exception of costs to be borne by South Korea, including equipment and compensation for „all facilities and all areas and rights of way.“ Among the most important bases are the U.S. Army`s Humphrey Garrison in Pyeongtaek, south of Seoul, the U.S. Army Yongsan Garrison in Central Seoul and Camp Walker in Daegu, southeast of Seoul. The U.S. Air Force has two bases in Osan and Gunsan, south of Seoul. In previous cost-sharing agreements, South Korea paid only for three categories – personnel costs for South Korean workers hired by U.S. troops, military construction costs such as building facilities inside U.S. bases, and military aid costs, such as services and materials. At the end of the 1950-53 Korean War, the United States and South Korea signed a mutual defence treaty in which the two countries agreed on collective self-defense that would be threatened either in the peaceful region.
This agreement served as the basis for the deployment of U.S. forces to South Korea. In the last one-year agreement reached in February 2019, South Korea agreed to increase its contribution to just under 1.04 trillion won ($927 million), an increase of about $70.3 million over the previous agreement. U.S. President Donald Trump has previously called the presence and activities of U.S. troops in and around South Korea a „$5 billion protection.“ According to the South Korean Defense Ministry, some 28,500 U.S. troops are deployed in South Korea. According to South Korea`s Defence White Paper, personnel costs, of South Korea`s approximately 932 billion won in 2015, amounted to about 37%, construction costs to 45%, and the rest to military aid spending.
It is the third largest presence of U.S. troops outside the U.S. mainland, after Japan and Germany, according to the U.S. Defense Data Center Manpower. In 1966, the two countries signed the Status of the Armed Forces Agreement (SOFA), which sets the rules for and protection of U.S. personnel stationed in South Korea. SEOUL (Reuters) – The 70-year security alliance between the United States and South Korea is under a new line of fire as Washington seeks to bear a much larger share of Seoul`s cost of hosting U.S. troops to deter North Korea. South Korea`s contribution for the coming year is being negotiated.
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