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Fans vow continued support for BTS' second chapter after military service

All News 18:10 October 17, 2022

SEOUL, Oct. 17 (Yonhap) -- Ardent fans of K-pop supergroup BTS were shocked Monday by the announcement of the members' plan to fulfill their mandatory military service, but accepted what was coming and promised to remain their ARMY during the transition period.

Known as ARMY (Adorable Representative MC for Youth), BTS' global fan base of millions of loyal followers is powerful enough to create major waves and has helped the group break music industry records since its debut in 2013.

K-pop superstar BTS hosts a free concert in the southern port city of Busan on Oct. 16, 2022, to support South Korea's bid to host the World Expo in 2030. (PHOTO NOT FOR SALE) (Yonhap)

K-pop superstar BTS hosts a free concert in the southern port city of Busan on Oct. 16, 2022, to support South Korea's bid to host the World Expo in 2030. (PHOTO NOT FOR SALE) (Yonhap)

But fans will have to wait for at least for three years to see their performance with a complete lineup, as its agency, Big Hit Entertainment, said its members will go off on military service duty starting with the oldest member, Jin. In South Korea, all able-bodied men should complete about two years of military service.

The announcement came two days after the seven-person group hosted a free concert in the southern port city of Busan to support South Korea's bid to host the World Expo in 2030.

Members dropped hints during Saturday's concert, which would be the last involving the full members in years.

"Whatever happens to us, if seven of us are on the same page and if you trust us, we will happily continue our music career," leader RM said during the concert. "Please trust us."

J-Hope struck a similar chord, saying "I think it's time for BTS and ARMY to design a future under united belief."

Fans voiced regrets over the forced suspension in their career but promised to support their decision.

"I was happy to watch BTS' Busan concert. I'm looking forward to seeing BTS' second chapter with ARMY," Jeong Hyun-ah wrote on her Twitter

"Don't worry BTS. We will always be your ARMY," Malaya Lillianna, a Russian fan, said in a post on BTS' concert clip following the announcement.

On eve of BTS concert
On eve of BTS concert

People, mostly fans of South Korean boy group BTS, watch a performance in the southeastern port city of Busan on Oct. 14, 2022, one day before BTS holds a large-scale concert there in support of the city's bid to host the 2030 World Expo. (Yonhap)

Until the band returns with a full lineup, members are expected to focus on their individual projects.

In July, J-Hope dropped his first formal solo album, "Jack in the Box," and performed in Chicago's annual Lollapalooza festival the following month, becoming the first Korean artist to headline a major U.S. music event.

Jin, the first member to enlist, will be the second member to release his own album.

"I've ended up becoming the second [BTS member] after J-Hope to release my own album. It's not a huge album or anything, it's just a single," Jin said during the concert.

Youtube

https://youtu.be/K-M0uYzUoUk

ejkim@yna.co.kr
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