‘Any change to USFK will be subject to joint decision with S.Korea’

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Any future changes to US Forces Korea (USFK) including troop levels will be made under joint decisions with South Korea, a Pentagon spokesman said.

“I can assure you that there’s no plans, no intentions to change our alliance posture in any way,” Department of Defence Press Secretary John Kirby said when on Friday asked if there can be any changes to the US troop level in South Korea in the near future.

“And any changes at all, not that I’m predicting any will always be done as an alliance decision in lockstep with our South Korean allies,” Yonhap News Agency quoted Kirby as saying.

His remarks come after the US Senate passed the defence budget bill, called the National Defence Authorization Act (NDAA) for the fiscal year 2022.

While the bill calls on the US government to maintain USFK troop levels intact, it does not limit the use of defence spending to reduce American troops in South Korea, unlike three previous NDAAs for fiscal years 2019-2021.

The US currently has some 28,500 forces in South Korea.

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