BTS singer Jin to enter South Korea’s military service, source says


Seoul, South Korea
CNN

K-pop superstar Jin will begin his mandatory military service next month, a source with direct knowledge of the situation confirmed Friday, after the BTS singer appealed to the supergroup’s devoted fans to stay away from his South Korean army training center.

The source said the 29-year-old star, BTS’ oldest member, will enter service on December 13 at the Yeoncheon Army Base in North Gyeonggi Province.

Military service is compulsory in South Korea, where almost all able-bodied men must serve in the army for 18 months at the age of 28.

In 2020, South Korea’s parliament passed a bill that allows pop stars – namely those who “excel in popular culture and art” – to defer their service until they reach the age of 30.

Jin’s service will begin with a five-week basic training course before being assigned to a unit based on standard practice.

The move had been widely expected.

Last month, BTS’ record label said all seven members of the group planned to undertake military service, and Jin – who turns 30 on December 4 – would be the first to enlist.

On Thursday, Jin posted a message on fan community app Weverse urging fans not to visit the military training center to catch a glimpse of him amid reports of his impending enlistment. He did not deny the reports in the post.

“Reports have come out against my will, but our ARMYs (BTS fans) should not come to the gym,” he wrote. “It can be dangerous because the place will be full of many people besides me who will come. ARMY, I love you.”

V, Suga, Jin, Jungkook, RM, Jimin and J-Hope of BTS attend the Grammy Awards in Las Vegas on April 3, 2022.

BTS has often been compared to The Beatles, even breaking one of the English rock band’s records with three Billboard No. 1 albums in a single year.

Their devoted fanbase calls themselves the “BTS Army,” driving their music and coming to their defense on social media in 2019 when the group was shut out of Grammy nominations. They have been nominated for three Grammy Awards in 2023.

With their military service coming up, BTS said in June that they would be taking a break to pursue solo projects. The group is expected to reunite in 2025, according to their record label.

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