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Intentional weight control tops list of draft dodging tactics

All News 14:59 June 27, 2018

SEOUL, June 27 (Yonhap) -- Intentional weight control, or purposely gaining or losing weight, was the most frequent tactic that young South Korean men were caught using to avoid South Korea's mandatory military service last year, the Military Manpower Administration said Wednesday.

The 2017 statistics on military manpower affairs, published by the administration, revealed a total of 59 cases of illegal means for draft evasion laid bare by its special legal police and intentional weight control topped the list of such cases with 37 percent.

Feigned insanity for the avoidance of conscription came next with 23.7 percent, trailed by getting a tattoo with the purpose of evading service with 20.3 percent. Among other less common ways of draft evasion were deception on educational background, intentional knee surgery and an intentional fracture.

According to the statistics, making up a health condition by intentionally increasing or decreasing weight has been the most common way prospective recruits use to evade responsibility for military service -- 33.3 percent of the total 54 cases in 2016 and 27.6 percent of the total 47 cases in 2015.

Some young South Koreans have been caught using creepy methods -- cutting fingers, having full-body tattoos and removing teeth -- to dodge their military service. In South Korea, all able-bodied males are required to serve almost two years in the military.

In case a would-be draftee is suspected of trying to dodge the draft by resorting to intentional weigh control, the administration usually defers its decision on whether he is judged eligible for conscription in a medical checkup and has him undergo an additional, unexpected medical checkup.

This May 2016 file photo shows a prospective soldier undergoing an eye exam during medical checkups for conscription at a Seoul office of the Military Manpower Administration. (Yonhap)


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