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BTS’ Suga becomes boy band’s 3rd member to start military service

All young, fit South Korean men must serve between 18 to 22 months in the military — including K-pop stars.
2021 American Music Awards - Fixed Show
(L-R) Jimin, J-Hope, Jin, Jungkook, RM, Suga, and V of BTS perform onstage during the 2021 American Music Awards at Microsoft Theater on November 21, 2021 in Los Angeles, California.Kevin Winter / for MRC
/ Source: TODAY

BTS member Suga will fulfill his mandatory military service starting this week, the group's record label said on Sunday. All young, fit Korean men must serve between 18 to 22 months — including pop stars.

Suga, 30, is set to begin his required service in the South Korean military on Friday, Sept. 22, BigHit Music said in a statement.

"There will not be any official events taking place on the day he starts his service or on the day he enters the training camp," BigHit Music said. "We kindly ask fans to refrain from visiting Suga at his workplace during the period of his service. Please convey your warm regards and encouragement in your hearts only."

The label added it would "strive to provide all the support he needs during this time," and asked fans to continue to send love and support to Suga until he completed his service and returned home.

Why do BTS members have to serve in the military?

Last year, the K-pop group's record label announced all seven members of BTS would be enlisting in the military, as all able-bodied men are expected to serve 18 to 21 months in the military before their 28th birthday under South Korean law.

The South Korean government passed a bill in 2020 allowing the largest K-pop stars — or any entertainer who has received government medals honoring their cultural influencer — to delay their service until the age of 30. The law granted BTS members Jin, Suga, J-Hope, RM, Jimin, V and Jungkook a two-year deferral.

Which other members of BTS have started their military service?

The group's oldest member Jin, 30, started his service in October, four months after the group announced they would be taking a hiatus to pursue their own solo projects.

BigHit Music announced in April J-Hope would enlist in the army, becoming the second member of the group to start his compulsory service.

J-Hope posted photos of himself in uniform on Instagram in August to his more than 47 million followers.