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US Negotiation Team Arrives in S. Korea for Defense Cost-Sharing Talks

Written: 2024-05-19 13:20:33Updated: 2024-05-19 13:59:41

US Negotiation Team Arrives in S. Korea for Defense Cost-Sharing Talks

Photo : YONHAP News

A United States delegation arrived in South Korea on Saturday for talks on the sharing of costs for the upkeep of U.S. Forces Korea.

Arriving at Incheon International Airport, chief negotiator Linda Specht told reporters that the planned talks are about the importance of the South Korea-U.S. alliance, their relationships as two countries and the support they give one another.

Specht, who is leading the U.S. negotiating team, added that she is looking forward to good talks.

Specht, along with officials from the U.S. State Department, the Pentagon and the USFK, will hold talks with South Korean officials in Seoul from Tuesday to Thursday for the second round of talks on the 12th Special Measures Agreement (SMA).

The two sides held the first round of talks in Hawaii on April 23 to 25 to exchange their basic positions.

Ahead of the second round of talks, South Korea reaffirmed that its share of defense costs should be kept to a "reasonable level," while the U.S. Embassy in Seoul said that 90 percent of South Korea's contributions are expended in South Korea's domestic economy, indicating the need to increase Seoul's share.

The current SMA is set to expire at the end of 2025.

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