The Ministry of National Defense will establish a language institution for training officers and non-commissioned officers in December.
According to sources, the ministry plans to merge language-training institutions run by the different branches of the military to establish a military language institute.
The new institution will instruct officers and non-commissioned officers who are scheduled to be sent overseas, in five languages including Chinese, English and French. Between 1,200 and 1,500 personnel are expected to receive training each year.
However, the Army, Air Force and the Navy will continue to be in charge of providing language skills with regards to specialty fields such as air traffic control.
In addition to training members of the Korean military, the new institution will provide Korean language programs for foreign officers receiving training in Korea.
At present officers from foreign forces study Korean at local universities for one year, before receiving military training at the academies operated by the different branches of the military.
The institute will be an arm of the combined military university established last year, and will be located on the grounds of the Army information technology school in Icheon, Gyeonggi Province. The Army’s IT school will be completed in September.
By Choi He-suk (email@example.com