BTS-Jin-on-Dokdo-islets
Dokdo islets/Courtesy of North Gyeongsang Province

Korean netizens come up with interesting proposal

One of the big interests of BTS fans is about the K-pop group member’s military services because Jin, who was born in 1992, is expected to enlist into the army next year.

In Korea, those aged between 18 and 28 should serve at least 21 months in the military and Jin, whose real name is Kim Seok-jin, cannot delay the mandatory service beyond next June.

In this climate, Korean netizens come up with an interesting proposal that BTS members should be stationed on Dokdo to underpin the sovereignty of the islets, which is also claimed by Japan.

Their rationale: Korea needs to take advantage of BTS’s rising popularity to let the world know that Dokdo is owned by Korea, not Japan that calls the islets Dakeshima.

Situated some 90 kilometers east of Korea’s Ulleung Island and 160 kilometers northwest of Japan’s Oki Island, Dokdo is a set of volcanic outcrops whose ownership has been disputed by Korea and Japan.

Currently, it is under the strict control of Seoul with its armed maritime police officers stationed there to thwart Tokyo’s territorial claim. But Japan continues to claim sovereignty of Dokdo that has abundant minerals and fishing resources.

Together with the wartime sex slavery issue, Dokdo has been a bone of contention between the two neighbors.

Observers point out that the proposal of Korean netizens is not plausible.

First of all, Jin has to choose to serve in the police instead of the army because Dokdo is protected by some 30 police officers. And then he should apply to work in the islets.

Only one out of 10 applicants is allowed to work on Dokdo. I don’t think that a famous singer would be able to pass a rigorous physical examination to work on a faraway island,” said a police officer in Seoul.

 

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