The military of the country had been hinting that it wanted to force members of the K-pop supergroup to serve in the military.
The world-famous members of BTS will do their required military service in South Korea, the group’s representatives said Monday. This confirms what their millions of fans have been fearing for a long time.
BigHit Music said in a statement that all seven members of the group will serve their time and not ask for any more delays or special exemptions. It said that Jin, the oldest member, will be the one to serve first.
The star, who will turn 30 in December, could have had to join the military early next year. However, BTS members have already been given a two-year extension. That put a cloud over the group’s future, and the country was split on whether to let the popular band delay the draught even more or let them skip it altogether.
All able-bodied men in South Korea are required by law to serve in the military for 18 to 21 months. This is to protect the country from its nuclear-armed neighbor, North Korea. But the law says that athletes, musicians, and other people who help the country’s reputation can get special treatment.
In the statement, BigHit Music said that the K-pop stars were “honored to serve” their country and that they would get back together as a group around the year 2025.
Jin is expected to start the process of joining the military as soon as his solo release schedule ends at the end of October, according to the group’s agency.
BigHit Music said that other members of the group plan to do their military service based on their own plans.
The agency claimed that “since BTS was formed over ten years ago, the band has risen to international success, broken records, and catapulted K-pop into the global stratosphere.”
The agency said it had been waiting for a “milestone moment” when it would be possible to meet the country’s needs and let these healthy young men serve with their fellow countrymen. That moment has now come, the agency said.
South Korea’s military made it clear in recent weeks that it wanted to force members of the K-pop supergroup to serve in the military.
Earlier this month, Lee Ki Sik, the head of the Military Manpower Administration, told lawmakers that it was “desirable” for BTS members to do their military duties to make things fair. During a parliamentary committee meeting, Defense Minister Lee Jong-sup also said similar things.
Because the draught makes young men stop working or going to school, getting out of military duty or making exemptions is a sensitive issue.
BTS said in June that they would stop making music as a group and work on solo projects instead. This raised questions about their future.