Seoul pushes back at Trump claims about more money for S. Korea troop agreement

Seoul pushed back on Wednesday against statements by President Donald Trump that suggested South Korea had agreed to pay $500 million more towards maintaining US troops in the country. Trump said on Tuesday it was part of an agreement sharing the cost of keeping roughly 28,500 American troops stationed in South Korea. “They were paying about $500 million for $5 billion worth of protection,” Trump said. “And we have to do better than that. So they’ve agreed to pay $500 million more.” Under the previous agreement – which lapsed amid disagreements in December – South Korea contributed $857 million in 2018. Kim Eui-kyeom, a spokesman for the presidential Blue House in Seoul, said when asked about the $500 million figure that it “shouldn’t be taken as a fait accompli,” Reuters reports.