Protests could disrupt training
SEOUL — U.S. Forces Korea issued a warning Friday about two dissident groups that plan to physically halt or interfere with two upcoming exercises.
Participants in the upcoming Reception Staging Onward Movement and Integration and Foal Eagle training should be wary of possible demonstrators, according to a force protection advisory posted on www.usfk.mil.
U.S. troops from Japan, Okinawa and stateside bases will be in South Korea to participate in the training.
The HanChongRyun and Pyontongsa dissident groups will target the March 25 to March 31 exercises, according to the advisory.
Demonstrators are expected outside bases and near lines of communication, with the intent to halt or interfere with RSOI activities, according to the warning.
Such interference may include large-scale demonstrations and actions by people attempting to make contact with exercise participants to gain media attention.
The advisory warns commanders to “avoid all contact with protesters up to and including temporarily halting a training event until Korean authorities are able to maintain order.”
All members of USFK have been urged to avoid demonstrations.
RSOI is an annual command post exercise that uses computer simulations to train members of the Combined Forces Command to bring additional forces to the peninsula from overseas and integrate them into warfighting units.
Safety is a top priority and Army Gen. B.B. Bell, senior U.S. commander in South Korea, addressed it in a recent message to his troops.
“I expect rigid enforcement of standards,” Bell wrote. “The result will be enhanced safety and a more disciplined force with pride in their unit, pride in their mission and pride in their accomplishments.”