Home / China / Top Stories

THAAD rollout to be delayed by ROK

China Daily | Updated: 2017-06-08 07:31

Deployment of the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense system in the Republic of Korea was expected to be delayed as President Moon Jae-in ordered an environmental evaluation of the US missile shield installation.

An unnamed South Korean Defense Ministry official was quoted by Yonhap News Agency on Wednesday as saying the large-scale assessment, which would normally take a year or so, would be shortened significantly.

Yonhap said that indicates completion by the end of this year. However, the official said the assessment would require hearings for residents near the THAAD site to voice their opinions, which would take several months.

Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said on Wednesday that China's opposition to the deployment is consistent. "We pay close attention to discussions concerning the issue in South Korea. China's opposition is firm and clear," Hua said at a daily news conference in Beijing.

On Monday, Moon ordered a probe into who tried to avoid a large-scale "green audit" of the THAAD deployment site at a golf course at Soseong-ri village.

According to the presidential Blue House, its preliminary investigation results showed the Defense Ministry offered 328,799 square meters of the golf course to the US Forces Korea in the first stage of land provision.

The golf course has a total area of about 700,000 square meters, and the remaining land was scheduled to be given to USFK in a second stage. By law, the provision of less than 330,000 square meters does not require such a large audit.

Yonhap reported a larger assessment "may... also delay or suspend the ongoing deployment" of the system.

Also on Wednesday, ROK Foreign Minister nominee Kang Kyung-wha said she will consider sending senior-level delegates to China over THAAD. Kang told a parliamentary confirmation hearing that communications between South Korea and China should be maintained through a variety of channels to narrow differences.

Since Moon took office on May 10, Kang said, special envoys from the ROK were dispatched to China, and the leaders of the two countries spoke via telephone.

Kang reiterated the new government's stance that the THAAD installation requires parliamentary discussions.

Xinhua - China Daily

Editor's picks
Copyright 1995 - . All rights reserved. The content (including but not limited to text, photo, multimedia information, etc) published in this site belongs to China Daily Information Co (CDIC). Without written authorization from CDIC, such content shall not be republished or used in any form. Note: Browsers with 1024*768 or higher resolution are suggested for this site.
License for publishing multimedia online 0108263

Registration Number: 130349