BTS member V to join special counter-terrorism unit

By Kim Joo-heon Posted : December 18, 2023, 14:51 Updated : February 7, 2024, 02:28
SDT members carrying out anti-terrorism training Yonhap Photo
SDT members undergoing anti-terrorism training. [Yonhap Photo]

SEOUL -- BTS member V is set to join South Korea's military police unit specializing in counter-terrorism operations and protecting high-profile individuals. The 27-year-old would be deployed to the "Special Duty Team" after completing a five-week basic military training at an army boot camp and an additional three-week training related to the military police missions.  

Males aged 18 or older must fulfill their mandatory military service of about 18 months unless they are exempted for valid reasons. Along with the seven-member band's leader RM, V entered the boot camp in Nonsan some 154 kilometers (96 miles) south of Seoul on December 11. Soldiers will be assigned to their units when they finish their five-week training at the boot camp or enter a specialization academy to receive further training for their specialties. 

Unlike regular army soldiers, members of the Special Duty Team (SDT) are selected through a screening process that involves physical tests -- push-ups, sit-ups, and a 1.5-kilometer (0.9 mile)-run -- before entering the boot camp. SDT soldiers are regarded as the Special Weapons And Tactics (SWAT) team within the South Korean military. 

V has confirmed that he is set to join the SDT through a live stream on fan community platform Weverse before his enlistment. "Rappelling might be a bit intimidating, but you should all trust me," the artist said. V is expected to be assigned to his unit in February 2024. Along with the rappelling course, SDT members normally undergo intensive training such as anti-terrorism tactics and bombing missions.

However, soldiers who experience extreme physical condition changes and display attitude problems during their basic training can be reassigned to a different military specialty. If V completes his basic training without major issues in Nonsan, he will undergo three weeks of professional SDT training before relocating to his unit. "I feel like he's going to perform well with the SDT," BTS' Filipino fan Sam Tan told Aju Korea Daily on December 18. "Every variety show game he's ever taken part in, he always knew how to outsmart everyone because he would usually think outside the box for his attacks and strategies."
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