BTS members have applied for postponement of their military enlistment until December 2022.
All 7 BTS members have filed for a postponement of their military enlistment until the age of 30.
This news took place after Korean National Assembly had gathered to discuss a revision to the Military Service Act that would allow culturally impactful and popular artists to replace their military service with volunteer work.
The original Military Service Act currently exempts culturally impactful sportsmen and artists with exceptional skills, not including singers. This can refer to musicians or renowned ballet dancers. However, with the impact that BTS has had globally and how they have helped to boost national prestige, many members of the public had been encouraging the government to reconsider expanding exemptions to singers and BTS. It seems that the involved councils are still reluctant to expand exemptions for various reasons, one cited including the drop in human resources for South Korea due to a declining population.
The Military Manpower Administration stated that the incorporation of popular cultural singers into the term of art and sports personnel requires careful review in consideration of objective standards and public consensus. Many have been especially relating this issue to BTS, given that they are one of the very few male singers that have achieved such status in South Korea and globally.
According to South Koren law, all Korean males must enlist by the time they reach 28 years of age, TS was previously granted permission to defer their enlistment until the age of 30 because they received the Hwagwan Order of Culture, which is a fifth grade Order of Cultural Merit.
The oldest member, Jin, will have up to December 2022 to join the military if the review is not passed. Jin wasn’t able to defer his enlistment, he would have had to enlist in December 2021, which is next month.
According to Arirang, now that all the members have applied for postponement of their military enlistment, BTS can continue performing as seven members until Jin goes to the military in December 2022.
Because all the members have applied to postpone their military enlistment, each individual member will be able to perform with the group until they turn 30 and have to begin their military service.