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Korea to expand women's role in military

Dec. 20, 2017 - 09:21 By Yonhap

South Korea will more than double the number of its female soldiers to 2,450 by 2022 as part of defense reform, the ministry of National Defense said Wednesday.

Currently, there are 1,100 active-duty female troops, 5.5 percent of the country's 625,000-strong armed forces.

The ministry plans to raise the ratio to 8.8 percent in the last year of the Moon Jae-in administration.


Voluntarily enlisted female officers in South Korea's military. (Yonhap)

It has also decided to scrap restrictions on assigning women to some commanding posts -- including those at front-line combat units, according to the ministry.

It will soon map out new common criteria to become commanders that will be applied to both men and women in the military.

Under South Korea's Constitution, women are not obliged to serve in the military, while all able-bodied male adults are conscripted for two-year services. 

But women can join the military as commissioned or non-commissioned officers. (Yonhap)