South Korea could conduct a public survey to assist decide whether or not to grant exemptions to necessary army service to members of the Okay-pop boyband BTS, officers stated Wednesday.
The problem of lively army service for the band’s seven members has been a hot-button subject in South Korea as a result of its oldest member, Jin, faces enlistment in December, when he turns 30.
Protection Minister Lee Jong-sup advised lawmakers that he ordered officers to implement a survey rapidly. He stated his ministry may also look into numerous different elements comparable to BTS’s financial affect, the significance of army service and total nationwide curiosity.
After his feedback created a stir, his ministry clarified in an announcement that Lee ordered officers to look at whether or not such a survey is required, relatively than launch it instantly.
It stated officers had been requested to review particulars together with which company could be answerable for a survey, how lengthy wouldn’t it take and who precisely could be surveyed. The assertion stated if the survey is carried out, will probably be executed by a 3rd group, not by the ministry or associated authorities, to make sure equity.
The ministry stated the outcomes could be solely one of many many elements figuring out BTS members’ army standing.
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By regulation, all able-bodied males in South Korea should serve 18-21 months within the army beneath a conscription system established to take care of threats from rival North Korea. However the nation provides exemption to athletes, classical and conventional musicians, and ballet and different dancers who win high locations in sure competitions as a result of they’re thought of to have enhanced nationwide status.
These exempted are launched from the army after taking three weeks of primary coaching. However they’re required to carry out 544 hours of volunteer work and serve of their respective skilled fields for 34 months.
Some politicians and others have known as for increasing the scope of exemptions to incorporate Okay-pop stars comparable to BTS as a result of they’ve elevated South Korea’s worldwide picture considerably as nicely.
A non-public survey earlier this 12 months confirmed about 60% of respondents supported army exemption for BTS members. However one other non-public survey in 2020 confirmed 46% backed exemptions whereas 48% opposed them.
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