Seoul and Washington are discussing the relocation of their combined forces command, the commander of the ROK-US Combined Forces Command, Gen. Robert Abrams, said in a statement Thursday, following media reports that he had suggested relocating the command’s headquarters in Yongsan to the United States Forces Korea’s Pyeongtaek base.
ROK-US Combined Forces Command in Yongsan, Seoul (Yonhap)
“At the appropriate future time, ROK and US government leadership will announce an alliance decision on the future CFC headquarters location, which will be in the best interests of the ROK-US Alliance and strengthen CFC’s ability to perform its missions,” Gen. Abrams, who also leads the USFK and UN Command, said in a statement.
The CFC is currently headquartered at USFK’s Yongsan Garrison in central Seoul. Its relocation has been discussed since the Yongsan base was closed and moved to Camp Humphreys in Pyeongtaek, Gyeonggi Province.
South Korea has been pushing to relocate the CFC to the Defense Ministry compound in Seoul. However, Gen. Abrams recently suggested moving the CFC to the Pyeongtaek base to South Korean Defense Minister Jeong Kyeong-doo, according to government sources here.
Seoul’s Defense Ministry said it was closely consulting with the United States on the relocation, but did not officially confirm whether such a suggestion was made by Gen. Abrams.
“We are closely discussing the matter of the relocation of the ROK-US CFC, and we will inform you when the final decision is made,” Defense Ministry spokeswoman Choi Hyun-soo said during a press conference Thursday.
The CFC said the future location of the headquarters is to be discussed by the two allies within the Military Committee Meeting and Security Consultative Meeting while staff-level coordination continues.
By Jo He-rim (firstname.lastname@example.org)