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S. Korea to hold scaled-down Armed Forces Day ceremony amid pandemic

Defense 11:23 September 18, 2020

SEOUL, Sept. 18 (Yonhap) -- South Korea will celebrate the 72nd Armed Forces Day on a smaller scale next week amid the coronavirus pandemic, the defense ministry said Friday.

The ceremony is scheduled to take place at the Army's Special Warfare Command in Icheon, some 80 kilometers southeast of Seoul, on Sept. 25, according to the ministry. It is the first time that the Armed Forces Day event will be held at the headquarters.

Armed Forces Day falls on Oct. 1, but the event will be held in advance due to the Chuseok holiday, it added.

Given the COVID-19 situation, the ministry plans to mobilize a minimum level of troops and equipment for the event, and fewer than 100 people will be invited.

But some events such as a flyby involving the F-35A next-generation stealth fighters and F-15K jets will take place, according to officials.

During last year's event, nearly 3,000 people were invited and diverse advanced weapons were on display. The country also showcased F-35A jets to the public for the first time on that occasion.

"The ceremony will serve as a chance to show off our troops' might. We will also display the Army's future vision that aims at creating peace," the ministry said in a statement.

President Moon Jae-in (R) reviews an F-35A stealth fighter during a ceremony to mark the 71st Armed Forces Day at an Air Force base in Daegu, 302 kilometers southeast of Seoul, on Oct. 1, 2019. (Yonhap)

graceoh@yna.co.kr
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