23:30 GMT +319 October 2018
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    South Korean President Moon Jae-in presides over the National Security Council at the Presidential Blue House in Seoul, South Korea, September 15, 2017

    S Korean President Dismisses US Troop Withdrawal After Peace Treaty With North

    © REUTERS / The Presidential Blue House/Yonhap
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    TOKYO (Sputnik) - South Korean President Moon Jae-in has dismissed the possibility of withdrawing US troops stationed in the country in the event of signing a peace treaty with North Korea, which will formally put an end to the 1950-1953 Korean War, presidential spokesman Kim Eui-kyeom said.

    "US Forces Korea (USFK) is a matter of the South Korea-US alliance. It has nothing to do with signing a peace treaty," the spokesman said as quoted by the Yonhap News Agency on Wednesday.

    According to the media outlet, Moon's remarks followed a proposal made by his special adviser Moon Chung-in on the withdrawal of USFK. This issue has cropped up following the recent historic meeting between the leaders of the two Koreas in the demilitarized zone (DMZ).

    At the end of April, North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and the South Korean president held a summit in the "truce village" of Panmunjom, during which the sides signed the Declaration for Peace, Prosperity and Unification on the Korean Peninsula. The document commits the two countries to a nuclear-free peninsula and talks to bring a formal end to the Korean War.

    Since no peace treaty was ever signed after the Korean War of 1950-1953, North and South Korea legally remain in a state of war. The 1953 Korean Armistice Agreement provided for a suspension of open hostilities and a fixed demarcation line with a buffer zone. Washington has maintained its troops presence in South Korea since that time. There are about 28,500 US servicemen currently stationed in South Korea.

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    Democratic Republic of North Korea (DPRK), United States, South Korea
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