• Top US Defense Cost Negotiator Reassigned To New Post

James DeHart, former senior adviser for security negotiations and agreements at the U.S. State Department, is appointed coordinator for Arctic affairs.
James DeHart, former senior adviser for security negotiations and agreements at the U.S. State Department, is appointed coordinator for Arctic affairs.
James DeHart, the U.S. representative for defense cost-sharing talks with South Korea, has been named a special envoy for the Arctic.

The State Department announced the move Wednesday, a week after Secretary Mike Pompeo vowed to enhanced engagement in the Arctic on a visit to Denmark.

DeHart's replacement has yet to be named.

From last September to this March, DeHart had taken part in a total of seven rounds of negotiations with Seoul officials on sharing the cost of keeping American troops on the Korean Peninsula.

Washington has asked for 1.3 billion dollars a year, a 50 percent hike from last year's payment, while Seoul has refused to give more than a 13 percent increase.

An official from the State Department said they remain committed to reaching a mutually acceptable deal, but reiterated that South Korea should contribute more of its fair share.

<Photo: Yonhap News>
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