This file photo, taken on Oct. 1, 2013, shows the South Korean Army marching through downtown Seoul as part of events to mark the 65th anniversary of the Armed Force Day. (Yonhap)
South Korea seeks to stage a large-scale military parade next year to mark the Oct. 1 Armed Forces Day, a defense ministry official said Tuesday, in what could be a major show of force just months after the launch of the country's next administration.
The ministry has set aside 7.98 billion won ($6.75 million) for the parade likely to showcase the nation's state-of-the-art military hardware, though a final decision would be made by the new government to be launched in May, the official said.
"We are considering holding a parade next year, but no decision has been finalized yet," the official told Yonhap News Agency on condition of anonymity.
The ministry used to hold a major military parade every five years. But it held a scaled-down event in 2018 amid peace efforts with North Korea, marking a stark contrast to the 2013 edition showcasing an array of the country's formidable weapons.
In 2019, the ministry revised a relevant rule to time a major military parade to take place in the year when a new commander-in-chief takes office -- a reason why it has earmarked a budget for a parade next year.
During the 2013 parade, the military mobilized some 4,500 troops and more than 100 units of military equipment for the parade that took place along a designated street linking Seoul City Hall and the Gwanghwamun Square in central Seoul. (Yonhap)