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800 new American troops to stay in Korea for 9 months

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Published : 2014-01-08 08:19
Updated : 2014-01-08 08:19

The Pentagon announced plans Tuesday to deploy 800 additional Army troops just south of the border between the two Koreas for nine months.

   The 1st Battalion, 12th Cavalry Regiment, from Fort Hood, Texas, will be deployed on Feb. 1 to two military bases -- Camps Hovey and Stanley -- northeast of Seoul.

   "The battalion will provide a trained and combat-ready force that will deploy with their equipment to South Korea. The equipment will remain in country for use by follow-on rotations," the Department of Defense said in a press release.

   The soldiers of the battalion will return to Fort Hood upon completion of their nine-month rotation, it added.

   The unit, part of the 1st Cavalry Division, is comprised of about 800 soldiers with wheeled and tracked vehicles.

   South Korea's defense ministry earlier made public the department's plans for the rotational deployment but it did not provide details, including the duration of their mission in Korea.

   The announcement came hours after talks between South Korean Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se and Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel at the Pentagon.

   They agreed to step up efforts to bolster the combat readiness of the allied forces to counter North Korea's threats.

   The upcoming deployment of the rotational force "supports the United States' defense commitment to the Republic of Korea as specified by the mutual defense treaty and presidential agreements," the Pentagon said. (Yonhap News)

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