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SEOUL — There are no plans to change a new 8th Army policy requiring soldiers deploying to Iraq or Afghanistan from South Korea to move their families out of base housing, spokesman Lt. Col. Brodrick Bailey said Wednesday.

About a dozen soldiers asked for exemptions to the policy during the first month it was in place. Lt. Gen. Joseph Fil signed the order, Command Policy #36, on June 2.

Bailey said this week that he wouldn’t say how many of those exemptions had been granted due to "operational concerns."

The policy also says that family members lose their U.S.-South Korea Status of Forces Agreement privileges and command sponsorship when the soldier makes a permanent change of station to the Middle East.

Families are allowed to remain in South Korea if they get an independent visa, such as an employment or 90-day tourist visa.

Command-sponsored families have to move out of base housing when their active-duty family member deploys, but the military will pay for the family’s off-post housing in South Korea, officials say. If the soldier makes a PCS move to a U.S. base before going to the Middle East, the government will pay a family housing allowance for that stateside duty location.

The new policy is meant to clarify soldiers’ options for their families when they deploy, 8th Army spokesman Maj. Jerome Pionk said earlier this month.


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