The ADF has deployed a small number of military personnel to the Korean Peninsula to support the implementation of the inter-Korean Comprehensive Military Agreement following a request from UN Command.
The Comprehensive Military Agreement, signed by South Korea and North Korea in September 2018, includes a series of confidence building measures that aim to reduce military tensions on the peninsula.
UN Command, which is responsible for maintaining the Armistice Agreement signed in 1953 at the end of the Korean War, is working with both states to implement the measures.
Chief of Joint Operations Air Marshal Mel Hupfeld said Australia would support implementation of the Comprehensive Military Agreement measures within the Demilitarised Zone.
“Australia supports efforts to improve inter-Korean relations and reduce tensions on the Korean Peninsula,” Air Marshal Hupfeld said.
“As part of these efforts, the ADF will initially contribute three personnel to support the implementation of the Comprehensive Military Agreement confidence building activities within the Demilitarised Zone.”
The ADF contribution to the UN Command includes the recent appointment of Rear Admiral Stuart Mayer as its next Deputy Commander. The appointment is the first time an Australian will serve in the position and only the second time in the Command’s 69-year history that the post has been offered to a non-American officer.
The news also follows the recent deployment of a P-8A Poseidon and HMAS Melbourne to conduct surveillance patrols and prevent the ship-to-ship transfer of sanctioned goods.