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World US furloughs thousands of South Koreans who work on US bases over cost sharing dispute

17:17  01 april  2020
17:17  01 april  2020 Source:   cnn.com

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SEOUL, SOUTH KOREA - Thousands of South Korean workers on U . S . bases The cost - sharing dispute has caused unusual friction in the 70-year-old alliance that both sides regularly refer to as The partial furlough of [ Korean National] employees is not what we envisioned or hoped what would

SEOUL — South Korea on Tuesday criticized the U . S . military's decision to place thousands of Korean workers on unpaid leave this week, after South Korea and the United States are embroiled in a dispute dating back almost two years over how much each should pay to support the roughly 28

\ a group of people sitting in front of a building: U.S. military forces in South Korea hold an opening ceremony for their new headquarters at Camp Humphreys in the western seaport city of Pyeongtaek, south of Seoul, on June 29, 2018. The expansion of Camp Humphreys in recent years made it the largest overseas U.S. base. (Kyodo via AP Images) ==Kyodo © Kyodo via AP Images U.S. military forces in South Korea hold an opening ceremony for their new headquarters at Camp Humphreys in the western seaport city of Pyeongtaek, south of Seoul, on June 29, 2018. The expansion of Camp Humphreys in recent years made it the largest overseas U.S. base. (Kyodo via AP Images) ==Kyodo

Thousands of South Koreans who work on US bases in South Korea were furloughed on Wednesday after the Trump administration and South Korea failed to reach a new cost-sharing formula for the cost of US troops stationed. 

CNN previously reported that top officials warned in February the move could undermine the US military mission amid tensions with North Korea. Approximately 4,500 South Korean workers are furloughed from their jobs on various US military installations on Tuesday.

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On Tuesday, South Korean negotiator Jeong Eun-bo said South Korea regretted the U . S . military’s decision to go ahead with the furloughs with negotiations in their Representatives for South Korea ’s Foreign Ministry and the U . S . Embassy in Seoul declined to comment on the status of the negotiations.

A US - South Korea joint river-crossing exercise near the demilitarized zone separating the two Koreas in Yeoncheon, South Korea . Seoul on Tuesday criticized the US military’s decision to place thousands of South Korean workers on unpaid leave this week, after the two allies failed to sign a

The dispute over the cost of the 28,500 US troops stationed on the Korean peninsula erupted after President Donald Trump asked for a 400% increase in South Korea's contribution under the so-called Special Measures Agreement. The demand outraged Seoul and concerned US lawmakers in both parties.

In February, a senior State Department official said US officials had "adjusted our stance" during the course of negotiations, and said they are not currently laser-focused on getting the South Koreans to increase the amount they pay by 400%.

The last deal agreed upon in February 2019 boosted South Korea's contribution from about $800 million to nearly $1 billion.

The commander of US troops in South Korea called the South Korean employees who were furloughed "vital" to the US mission and to the Republic of Korea-US alliance.

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(Bloomberg) -- The U . S . and South Korea have tentatively reached a military cost - sharing agreement, the Yonhap News Agency reported, potentially ending months of bickering over the Trump General Robert Abrams, commander of U . S . Forces Korea , called the furloughs “heartbreaking,” saying in a

thousands of South Korean civilians who work for the U . S . military in South Korea from being The U . S . and South Korean government have been in a months-long stand-off over this year's Two U . S . officials said the two sides are working on an interim agreement that could delay the furloughs .

"While this is an unfortunate situation and we will miss them dearly, we will work to minimize the impact on our 'fight tonight' posture despite the strenuous circumstances," Gen. Robert Abrams said in a statement Wednesday. "This is an unfortunate day for us...it's unthinkable...it's heartbreaking. The partial furlough of KN employees is not what we envisioned or hoped what would happen."

The furloughs also come amid the global coronavirus pandemic. On Tuesday, South Korea's Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported 101 new cases of coronavirus, bringing the national total to 9,887 confirmed cases and 165 deaths. 

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