Washington and Seoul held talks on the US military presence in the South Korea for the first time since the US presidential election, the South Korean foreign ministry said Tuesday.

Iran PressAsia: During the video talks held Monday night (Korea time), South Korea's chief negotiator Jeong Eun-bo and his US counterpart Donna Welton agreed to closely work together to swiftly reach an agreement that is fair and mutually acceptable," the ministry said.

The negotiations on determining Seoul's payment for maintaining the 28,500-strong US Forces Korea have remained stalled amid Washington's call for a drastic increase in Seoul's share. Korea has offered a 13 percent raise as the maximum.

The last face-to-face talks between Jeong and his previous US counterpart, James DeHart, took place in Los Angeles in March. Welton was appointed as DeHart's successor in July. 

South Korea has the third-largest presence of US troops based overseas after Japan and Germany. Major bases include the US Army Garrison Humphreys in Pyeongtaek, south of Seoul, which covers 14.7 million square meters.

South Korea currently contributes about $900 million to the upkeep of US troops in the country.

People in South Korea have helkd maany protests against the US military presence, demanding the clouser of US bases in their country.


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