South Korea Signs a Deal with US - Agrees to Pay More for American Troops Presence
South Korea and the United States struck a new deal on Sunday increasing the share of Seoul's contribution to the cost of the U.S. military presence on its soil. This comes amidst worries in their decades-long alliance after previous rounds of failed negotiations.
The new deal must still be approved by South Korea’s parliament, but it would boost its contribution to 1.03 trillion won ($890 million) from 960 billion won in 2018.
The previous agreement was for five years and had expired in 2018 which had pushed for a new deal. Unlike the previous one, this is supposed to last only for a year.
The U.S. military had arrived in South Korea to disarm Japan, which colonized the Korean Peninsula from 1910-45, following its World War II defeat. Most U.S. troops were withdrawn in 1949 but they returned the next year to fight alongside South Korea in the 1950-53 Korean War. Since then the American troops are present in the Korean soil.
South Korea began paying for the U.S. military deployment in the early 1990s, after rebuilding its war-devastated economy. The big U.S. military presence in South Korea is a symbol of the countries' alliance.