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South Korea Dismisses US’ Renewed Demand of Cost Sharing on Strategic Assets

South Korea has declined a renewed demand from the United States to share the costs of deploying U.S. troops (its strategic assets) in and around the Korean Peninsula.

During its fourth round of the 10th Special Measures Agreement (SMA) talks with South Korea, earlier this week, the U.S. made this demand.

Washington had urged that Seoul share the costs stemming from strategic assets deployment. Seoul, as per Yonhap, rejected the request, saying that the issue is not subject to their negotiations.

The talks are aimed at renewing the existing SMA deal, which will expire at the end of this year.

The negotiations were kicked off in March.

Since the early 1990s, South Korea has shared the financial burden of United States Forces Korea (USFK). Around 28,500 U.S. servicemen and women are stationed in South Korea, presently.

The latest discussions came after the allies decided to suspend major joint military drills as a goodwill gesture towards North Korea for its commitment to denuclearisation.

However, the U.S. stated that they don’t plan to reduce the number of its troops in South Korea.

With regard to the cost-sharing negotiations, the two sides are making efforts to reach a common consensus.

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