SEOUL – United States Secretary of Defense James Mattis will travel to Seoul next week to meet with his South Korean counterpart, Song Young-moo, and analyze the current military situation on the Korean peninsula amid the ongoing rapprochement with North Korea.
The meeting between Mattis and Song is scheduled for June 28, a spokesperson for the South Korean Ministry of National Defense confirmed to EFE.
Both officials will discuss “various ways related to follow-up measures to North Korea-U.S. (summit) talks and South-North Korea relations,” another spokesperson for the ministry Choi Hyun-soo said at a press conference.
The temporary suspension of the annual US-South Korea joint military maneuvers in August could also be addressed, which will help facilitate future discussions with Pyongyang and its denuclearization as agreed in the US-North Korea summit on June 12 in Singapore.
The suspension of these military drills raises some concerns over the preparedness of the US and South Korean troops in the future.
The allies are also scheduled to negotiate next week on the financial proportion that each country contributes to the maintenance of the 28,500 US soldiers in South Korea, which US President Donald Trump said is very expensive for the US.
According to the latest agreement between the two countries, Seoul has paid approximately half of the total cost or some $865 million for 2018.