|Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) chairman Gen. Park Han-ki speaks during the National Assembly's audit of JCS, held at the JCS headquarters, Tuesday. Yonhap|
Joint Chiefs of Staff also planning to hold military committee meeting with US
By Jung Da-min
South Korea and Russia are on track to sign a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to establish a hotline to exchange flight information to monitor possible incursions into the Korean Air Defense Identification Zone (KADIZ), the Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) said during the National Assembly annual audit, Tuesday.
The release of a JCS report to members of the Assembly National Defense Committee follows a Russian military plane violating South Korean airspace after flying through the KADIZ near the country's easternmost islets of Dokdo, July 23. Earlier the same day, two other Russian and two Chinese bombers flew into the KADIZ near Jeju Island and again near Dokdo.
The Ministry of National Defense summoned the Russian military attache to lodge a protest; while during the incident Republic of Korea Air Force KF-16s and F-15Ks fired 360 warning shots near the Russian aircraft.
Seoul and Moscow agreed on a draft for establishing a military hotline between the two countries' Air Forces in November last year. The specific date to officially sign the agreement will be discussed when the two hold a joint military committee meeting.
On a related note, South Korea and China have been operating a bilateral military hotline through a joint Master Control and Reporting Center (MCRC) since 2015, but this only covers North China. In April this year, South Korea proposed establishing a second MCRC to cover East China during working-level talks between the two countries air forces.
During the audit, the JCS said that it plans to hold the 44th Military Committee Meeting (MCM) between JCS Chairman Gen. Park Han-ki and new U.S. JCS chief Mark Milley, Nov, 14, at its Seoul headquarters.
The MCM is held before the annual ministerial-level Security Consultative Meeting. If needed, the MCM can be held more than once a year.
The U.S. has recently been reiterating the trilateral alliance among the U.S., South Korea and Japan to maintain regional security, amid a deepening feud between Seoul and Tokyo over a wide range of historical, trade and security issues.