중앙데일리

SOFA Negotiations Slated for August 2-3

Aug 01,2000
Seoul and Washington will hold talks for the revision of the Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA) on August 2~3 at a Korean government building in Seoul.

The Korea-U.S. SOFA negotiations open after a four years hiatus. The up-coming talks will discuss the criminal and civil legal rights of 37,000 U.S. troops stationed in South Korea, the Korean environment and the labor rights of Korean employees at U.S. military bases, according to the spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MOFAT).

South Korean authorities will demand custody of U.S. service members accused of a crime. Currently, U.S. service members are only turnedover to Korean authorities after a conviction. Meanwhile, the U.S. will likely demand that Korean authorities abandon their right to prosecute U.S. service members for offenses carrying sentences less than three years.

The Korean delegation is composed of 10 officials from the ministries of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Finance and Economy, Justice, Defense, Agriculture-Forestry, Environment, and Labor. The delegation will be led by Song Min-soon, director general of the North American Affairs Bureau at MOFAT. The U.S. delegation includes officials from Departments of State and Defense, the U.S. Embassy in Seoul, and U.S. Forces in Korea. It is led by Frederick Smith, deputy assistant secretary of defense for Asia-Pacific affairs.

by Choi Hoon




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