Sunday, May 19, 2013

U.S. says (Korean) OPCON transfer plan on track but not guaranteed

I won't belabor the point but my thoughts are in the article at this link.


2013/05/18 05:22 KST

U.S. says OPCON transfer plan on track but not guaranteed
By Lee Chi-dong

WASHINGTON, May 17 (Yonhap) -- The U.S. scheme to transfer wartime operational control (OPCON) of South Korean troops back to Seoul remains on track but it is uncertain whether the allies will be fully ready for the agreed-upon target date -- Dec. 1, 2015, a U.S. official said earlier this week.

   "The timeline is, of course -- we expect it to be on track, but at the end of the day we have to be sure it is safe and it is secure to transfer that," Joseph Yun, acting assistant secretary of state for East Asian and Pacific affairs, told a congressional hearing on Thursday, according to a formal transcript.

   He cited "a lot of work that needs to be done."

   "I would say among the most important work is the South Korean capability for intelligence, as well as having interoperable equipment," Yun said.

   Some conservatives in South Korea have consistently called for a further delay in the OPCON transition, arguing it may send a wrong signal to a nuclear-armed North Korea.

   South Korea handed over its operational control to the U.S.-led U.N. troops during the 1950-53 Korean War. Seoul regained peacetime OPCON in 1994.

   South Korea initially agreed to take back its wartime OPCON as of April 17, 2012. Shortly after North Korea's deadly torpedo attack on a South Korean warship in 2010, however, Seoul requested a delay in the schedule. Washington accepted it.
(Continued at the link below)

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