While same-sex activity is legal in South Korea, it is banned in the military. The law states that this is ‘to keep the military community sound’. However, South Korea also has a mandatory two-year draft for all ‘able-bodied male citizens’.
Those prosecuted could be placed in prison for six months to two years and military officers are actively searching for gay and bisexual men. According to campaigners, this witch-hunt has continued since 2017, and an un-named soldier told the French Press Agency (AFP) that he faces legal action even after leaving the military because his relationship with another soldier was caught. The 27-year-old said ‘I worked very hard as an officer, but none of that mattered when I became a suspect. There were days when I just wanted to die.’
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