Kim Gamel

Defense act restricts efforts to cut US troop numbers in South Korea

The $717 billion bill prevents the Pentagon from cutting the number of servicemembers deployed to South Korea below 22,000 unless the defense secretary has certified that it’s in the “national security interest” and that the secretary has “appropriately consulted” with regional allies.

US-led command hands over remains of North Korean soldier

The U.S.-led United Nations Command has returned the remains of a North Korean soldier more than a year after they were found near a border island.

Korean leaders to hold 3rd summit next month in Pyongyang

South Korean President Moon Jae-in will travel to Pyongyang next month for his third summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, officials announced Monday, a move that could boost stalled nuclear negotiations.


Two Koreas move closer despite deadlock over nuclear talks

The preparations come as the North stepped up its demands that the U.S. ease punishing economic sanctions and move toward declaring a formal end to the 1950-53 Korean War in return for denuclearization efforts.

Two Koreas to prepare for another summit amid stalled nuclear talks

The two Koreas have agreed to hold high-level talks Monday to prepare for another summit between their leaders, even as nuclear talks between the North and the United States have stalled.

Pair of American soldiers killed in Korean War finally being sent home for burial

The remains of Army Cpl. Terrell J. Fuller and Army Sgt. William A. Larkins — both 20 when they died — were handed over as part of joint searches and unilateral handovers from North Korea that took place more than a decade ago.

Trump praises N. Korean leader for returning remains of war dead

President Donald Trump thanked North Korea’s leader for returning the remains of war dead and hinted at another summit amid concern that the momentum for a nuclear deal has stalled.


'A great first step': Remains of presumed US Korean War dead begin journey home

Fifty-five cases presumed to be holding the remains of U.S. troops killed in the Korean War began their journey home Wednesday after a formal send-off at Osan Air Base.

War dead remains from N. Korea ‘likely to be American,’ DPAA official says

A two-day field forensic review determined that the remains are human and “are likely to be American remains,” according to an official with the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency.

North Korea’s return of presumed US war dead remains is start of long process

The U.S. military plans to hold a ceremony Wednesday to honor the 55 cases of human remains handed over by North Korea last week. But it’s likely to be a long time before the identities of those inside can be verified.

American man seeks return of his civilian father’s remains from N. Korea

Just seven American civilians who served before and during the outbreak of the Korean War remain unaccounted for — compared to over 7,000 servicemembers. Still, one man hopes his efforts will help bring his long-lost father home.

North Korea dismantling key missile-testing site, images show

North Korea has taken “an important first step” toward fulfilling a promise made during its summit with the United States by starting to dismantle a key missile-testing site, a monitoring website said Monday.

Trump administration says ‘no rush’ on nuclear deal with N. Korea

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said the sides have made progress on some issues, including the promised return of remains of American troops killed in the 1950-53 war, which he said was expected to happen “in the next couple of weeks.”

S. Korean military grounds helicopters after crash kills 5 marines

The South Korean military grounded dozens of new helicopters after five marines were killed in a crash during a test-flight, officials said Wednesday.

US soldiers help S. Korean accident victim during drive to Camp Humphreys

Three American medical soldiers were in the “right place at the right time” on Friday the 13th.

N. Korea may return up to 55 sets of US war dead remains next week, official says

The preliminary details emerged after U.S. and North Korean officials held working-level talks Monday in the truce village of Panmunjom in the Demilitarized Zone.

US, N. Korean officials meet to discuss return of war dead remains

U.S. and North Korean officials met Sunday in the truce village of Panmunjom to discuss the return of the remains of American soldiers killed during the 1950-53 war.

UN Command, South Korea honor remains of 2 soldiers killed in Korean War

With a 21-gun salute and the playing of taps, the U.S.-led United Nations Command and South Korea on Friday repatriated the remains of two soldiers found decades after they were killed in the Korean War.

N. Korea skips meeting on repatriating the remains of American war dead

North Korean officials skipped planned talks on repatriating the remains of American war dead Thursday in the latest snub of a U.S. administration eager to show progress on efforts to rid the communist state of nuclear weapons.


North Korea’s angry response to Pompeo visit signals the honeymoon is over

A month after President Donald Trump shook hands with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in Singapore, recent harsh rhetoric was a signal that the honeymoon is over as the two sides appear no closer to agreement on concrete measures, a timeline or even a definition of denuclearization.

Mustache diplomacy: Retired Adm. Harry Harris has new look for new diplomatic role in S. Korea

The former leader of U.S. forces in the Pacific, who arrived in Seoul on Saturday, said he decided it was time for a change after being clean-shaven for most of his military career.


New US ambassador to S. Korea introduces himself, vows to maintain bond between allies

Ambassador Harry Harris introduced himself to South Koreans in a video on the embassy’s social media sites. “Folks, I’m jazzed about meeting you, experiencing more of Korea and working together to deepen the great partnership between our two countries,” he said.


Fears over North Korea’s nuclear intentions increase pressure on Trump to nail down details

Recent revelations suggesting that North Korea is pressing forward with its nuclear missile program increase pressure on the Trump administration to wrest concrete concessions and denuclearization timelines from the communist state.

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USFK dedicates new headquarters at Camp Humphreys

The U.S. military took a major step toward ending seven decades of deployments near the border with North Korea Friday when the main command officially moved south of Seoul to an expanded Camp Humphreys.


From foxholes to high-rises: A look at the US military’s long history in South Korea

Nearly 14 years after agreeing to move American troops south of Seoul, U.S. Forces Korea will celebrate the opening of its new headquarters at Camp Humphreys on Friday, beginning a new phase in the military’s decades-old history on the divided peninsula.

Mattis defends decision to suspend war games, says US commitment to S. Korea 'remains ironclad'

Defense Secretary Jim Mattis defended the suspension of U.S.-South Korean war games as a tool to boost nuclear talks with the North, but he said Thursday that Washington has no plans to reduce the number of troops on the divided peninsula.

N. Korea improves nuclear complex amid negotiations, report says

The report by 38 North, a website devoted to analysis of North Korea, which was posted Tuesday, stressed that the ongoing efforts at the Yongbyon Nuclear Scientific Research Center “should not be seen as having any relationship” to North Korea’s denuclearization pledge.

Summit vow raises hopes for families of Americans missing from Korean War

President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un committed during their June 12 summit in Singapore to “recovering POW/MIA remains, including the immediate repatriation of those already identified.” Families of missing servicemembers said it's an important step.

South Korea also searching for troops missing from 1950-53 war

While attention is focused on North Korea’s promise to return the remains of American troops believed lost in the 1950-53 war, South Korea is quietly engaged in an ongoing effort to locate war dead on its side of the border.

US sends coffins to border with N. Korea to prepare for return of war dead remains

The U.S. military sent 100 wooden coffins to the truce village on the border with North Korea on Saturday as it steps up preparations for the return of the remains of American soldiers killed in the 1950-53 war, according to the U.N. command.

US widens suspension of military drills in S. Korea, says cancellations are 'indefinite'

The Pentagon said Friday that the suspension would include two joint Marine training exercises that had been “scheduled to occur in the next three months.” The military previously announced it was halting all plans for a massive command post exercise known as Ulchi Freedom Guardian, which had been due to begin in August.

2 Koreas agree to resume reunions of families split by war

The reunions of 100 families from each side will take place at North Korea's Diamond Mountain resort from Aug. 20 to 26, the two sides said after a daylong meeting between Red Cross officials.

Army takes step toward closing Camp Red Cloud with inactivation ceremony

Soldiers stood in formation as the garrison’s colors were cased Thursday in a ceremony officials said marked an important step toward closing this Korean War-era base and reducing the U.S. footprint north of Seoul.

S. Korea steps up pressure on North to take ‘concrete action’ toward denuclearization

South Korea’s foreign minister warned on Wednesday that the suspension of war games with the United States is “not irreversible” as she urged the North to take concrete action toward abandoning its nuclear weapons program.

UN Command planning for N. Koreans to turn over remains of US war dead

The U.N. Command in South Korea is planning for the North Koreans to turn over the remains of U.S. troops who died in the 1950-53 war, a spokeswoman said Wednesday.

US follows through on promise to cancel ‘war games’ with S. Korea

The United States followed through on its promise to North Korea, announcing Tuesday that it was canceling war games with South Korea that had been slated for August and was expecting concrete steps toward denuclearization in return.

S. Korea kicks off naval drills rehearsing defense of islets disputed by Japan

Despite protests from Tokyo, South Korea kicked off naval drills Monday aimed at practicing for a theoretical fight with Japan over a disputed cluster of islets that sit in the sea between the countries.


Impact of halting US-S. Korean war games will depend on scope

U.S. and South Korean commanders have long stressed the need for joint military exercises to ensure readiness to “fight tonight” and deter the threat from the North. But the idea of using the annual drills as a bargaining chip in nuclear negotiations with North Korea is nothing new.

Secretary of state clarifies stance as Trump says North Korean nuclear threat has ended

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo laid out an ambitious timeline for the North’s denuclearization, saying the administration wants the communist state to take major steps toward nuclear disarmament in the next two and a half years.

American teenager killed in Yongsan crash was a high school sophomore

Christie Gagnet died Saturday after the car in which she was riding collided with a motorcycle outside Gate 13, which is the main visitors’ entrance at the sprawling U.S. military base in Seoul. She was 15.

N. Korea claims concessions after summit with US

North Korea and the United States celebrated their historic summit on Wednesday despite criticism that President Donald Trump gave up too much, too soon, including war games with South Korea.

US suspends military drills with South Korea in surprise overture to North

The stunning announcement reverses decades of U.S. military posture in the region, with joint exercises at the heart of readiness against North Korea’s artillery and more than a million soldiers poised across the border.

Trump, Kim commit to recovering Korean War remains

Remains of an estimated 5,300 missing American servicemembers are in North Korea and potentially recoverable. Efforts to find them stalled as tensions rose over the North’s nuclear weapons program.

N. Korean leader says ‘world will see a major change’ after historic talks with Trump

Donald Trump didn’t give details about what was signed but described it as a “pretty comprehensive document” and said the meeting had gone “far better than anybody had predicted.”

White House optimistic, says talks with North Korea 'have moved more quickly than expected'

On the eve of his high-stakes summit with North Korea, officials from both sides worked until the last minute to try to hammer out a nuclear agreement. The White House declared talks “have moved more quickly than expected.”


What’s next for US troops in S. Korea? A look at possible scenarios

U.S. troops may not be on the table during Tuesday’s summit between President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, but they are looming in the background.

Trump optimistic on eve of historic summit with North Korea

On the eve of his high-stakes summit with North Korea, President Donald Trump expressed optimism Monday as officials from both sides worked until the last minute to try to hammer out a nuclear agreement.

Tragic Yongsan Garrison crash strikes American family on graduation day

The crash, which occurred outside the base's gate, killed two people — one American and the South Korean motorcycle driver — and injured another American.

Denuclearization deal might prove elusive at historic Trump, Kim summit

President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un will make history when they meet next week in Singapore for the first-ever summit between the rival nations after decades of hostilities that have sometimes brought the world to the brink of war.

S. Korea to push for recovery of Korean War-era remains in talks with North

South Korea will take advantage of improved relations with the North to push for the recovery of remains of soldiers killed in the 1950-53 Korean War, President Moon Jae-in said Wednesday.


Camp Humphreys hospital nearly complete, but opening day’s still long away

No building epitomizes the problems that have plagued the expansion of this Army garrison south of Seoul more than its new hospital.

S. Korea promises to avoid hype in joint war games with US

South Korea will conduct annual war games with the United States as planned but will avoid publicizing them to facilitate diplomatic efforts over the North’s nuclear weapons program, the defense ministry said Monday.

Fate of US troops in S. Korea won’t be topic at summit, Mattis says

Underscoring the sensitivity of the issue, the North on Sunday renewed its criticism of Seoul for planning to join Washington in military exercises, despite the allies’ insistence that the drills are defensive in nature.

US-N. Korean summit back on; Trump calls it start of a 'process'

The June 12 summit in Singapore, which will be the first of its kind, will focus on persuading the North to abandon its nuclear weapons program. Donald Trump said he believes Kim Jong Un is committed to that goal.

2 Koreas hold talks on improving relations amid flurry of diplomacy

North and South Korea resumed high-level talks on improving relations Friday, adding another layer to a flurry of diplomacy aimed at salvaging a U.S.-North Korean summit and resolving the crisis over the North’s nuclear weapons program.

Russian foreign minister visits Pyongyang as US, N. Korean diplomats try to rescue summit

As diplomats worked on three fronts to rescue a U.S.-North Korean summit, Russia’s foreign minister met with Kim Jong Un in Pyongyang and called for the phased lifting of sanctions to resolve the crisis over the North’s nuclear weapons program.

US, Korean leaders revive summit hopes, but skepticism high

Experts said President Donald Trump’s abrupt cancellation last week of the June 12 meeting may already have damaged the U.S. negotiating position as it seeks to force the North to abandon its nuclear weapons program.

North and South Korean leaders meet again in bid to save peace efforts

The leaders of North and South Korea met Saturday for the second time in a month amid efforts to get a potential U.S.-North Korean summit back on track.

Trump, Mattis indicate that North Korea summit is still a possibility

President Donald Trump adopted a warmer tone after the North Korea’s outreach on Friday, saying it was even possible the summit could take place on June 12 as planned. "They very much want to do it, we'd like to do it," he told reporters at the White House.

The Original Pancake House dishes up all-American breakfasts at Camp Humphreys

Camp Humphreys promises its American residents a taste of home — and in the case of pancakes, it delivers.

US must decide whether to meet or face ‘nuclear showdown,’ N. Korea says

The heightened rhetoric underscores fears that the two sides are far apart in their goals for upcoming talks. Just over two weeks remain before the first-ever summit between a North Korean leader and a sitting U.S. president.

American civilians moving to Camp Humphreys face bigger tax bills during base relocation

A revision in the new tax-reform law that removed exemptions on moving expenses took effect just as the long-delayed relocation of U.S. military forces south of Seoul started picking up speed.

Trump, Moon to meet amid efforts to keep N. Korean diplomacy afloat

President Donald Trump and his South Korean counterpart agreed to work closely to ensure the success of the planned U.S.-North Korean summit as they prepare for their own meeting Tuesday in Washington.


N. Korea raises stakes, threatens to cancel Trump-Kim summit

North Korea threatened to cancel its upcoming summit with the United States if Washington maintains its key demand that Pyongyang unilaterally give up its nuclear weapons.

North Korea cancels high-level meeting with officials from Seoul

North Korea canceled a high-level meeting with the South Wednesday and threatened to do the same with its landmark summit with the United States next month in a major setback for the recent diplomatic offensive over its nuclear weapons program.

North Korea has begun dismantling nuclear test site, experts say

U.S. researchers say recent satellite imagery shows that North Korea has begun dismantling facilities at its nuclear test site.

Diplomacy gives North Korean leader a popularity boost in South

After years of being seen as a reclusive, cartoon-like character who rules his country with an iron fist, Kim Jong Un is suddenly appearing on the global stage with senior U.S., Chinese and South Korean officials, easing tensions after months of threats and missile tests.

North Korea frees 3 American detainees, clearing hurdle for summit

Donald Trump announced the release of the three men on Twitter, capping hours of suspense after Secretary of State Mike Pompeo made his second surprise visit to Pyongyang in just over a month.

North Korea says US pressure is spoiling the mood for peace

President Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un are due to hold a meeting in coming weeks, although the date and venue have yet to be set.

US, S. Korea plan summit, dismiss talk of US troop withdrawal

The U.S. and South Korean presidents will meet before Donald Trump’s summit with the North, officials said, as the allies insisted American troops won’t be on the table in upcoming nuclear negotiations.

Trump says US troop withdrawal from South Korea is 'not on the table'

The president did not rule out the eventual removal of some troops from the peninsula in his brief comments Friday, telling reporters he’d "like to save the money" that it costs to house servicemembers there.

Fate of US troops in South Korea is elephant in the room amid nuclear talks

South Korean President Moon Jae-in rejected the idea of withdrawing U.S. troops from the peninsula, saying that the issue is unrelated to efforts to reach a peace treaty with the North.

S. Korean president says Trump deserves Nobel Peace Prize

President Donald Trump deserves a Nobel Peace Prize for his efforts to end the crisis over North Korea’s nuclear weapons, his South Korean counterpart said Monday.

Rebranding Kim: North Korean leader shows world his lighter side

He joked about missile tests and expressed embarrassment about the state of his country’s transit infrastructure.

N. Korean leader says he’s ‘not a person to launch nuclear weapons’ at US

In a dramatic reversal of past threats, Kim said he hoped for frequent meetings and trust-building measures with the United States, Moon’s spokesman Yoon Young-chan told reporters.

With ball in his court, Trump welcomes summit between 2 Koreas

With the ball in his court, President Donald Trump said Saturday that “things are going very well” after a historic inter-Korean summit that led to promises to pursue denuclearization and a permanent peace on the divided peninsula.