Seoul resists Trump’s demands for $1.2 billion a year to keep US troops on the peninsula

Seoul, South Korea  skyline.

The United States is demanding that South Korea pay an annual $1.2 billion (£918 million) to continue stationing troops on the peninsula, an increase of more than 40 percent on the amount that Seoul presently pays towards the 28,500 US troops deployed in the South.

Washington’s demand, put to officials in Seoul during their latest round of negotiations on the issue in December, was refused by the South Korean government – although the US ambassador to Seoul has since reportedly hinted that Washington may choose to interpret the two nations’ security treaty differently if it is not accepted.

That position, leaked to the domestic media, has triggered anger in South Korea, where the government has indicated it is able to pay a maximum of $886 million to keep the US forces in place.