23:24 GMT02 December 2020
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    South Korea's Lotte Group agreed to a planned exchange of land with the military for the installation of Washington's Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) anti-ballistic missile system, the country's Defense Ministry said Monday.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — The ministry reportedly said it was planning to sign the agreement with Lotte on Tuesday.

    "We have received a notice from Lotte Group that the company has given the green light to the land exchange plan with the military… To avoid delays in the installation, the ministry will carry out the process of handing over Lotte's golf course to the US military for THAAD operation and designing the site for a THAAD unit at the same time," the Defense Ministry said, as quoted by the Yonhap news agency.

    According to the media outlet, Lotte would receive a state-owned military plot of land near Seoul in exchange for its golf course in the southeast of the country.

    The THAAD system has a range of over 200 kilometers (125 miles) and is designed to intercept short, medium and intermediate ballistic missiles at the terminal incoming stage. The agreement on THAAD between South Korea and the United States was reached in July 2016, spurred by North Korea's nuclear program development.

    On February 12, Pyongyang launched a medium-range ballistic missile into the Sea of Japan and declared the test successful. This and a number of previous launches were considered to be in violation of the UNSC resolutions by the United Nations.

    Terminal High-Altitude Area Defense (THAAD), Democratic Republic of North Korea (DPRK), US, South Korea
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