BTS members will do military service and unlikely to perform again until 2025, says agent

The members of BTS, pictured here at the White House, will undertake mandatory military service. Credit: AP

The members of K-pop band BTS will do mandatory military service in South Korea, their management company has said.

The announcement comes after weeks of debate in the East Asian country, on whether band members should be granted an exemption from service due to their artistic accomplishments - something which exists under South Korean law.

Big Hit Music said the band’s oldest member, Jin, will revoke his request to delay his conscription at the end of the month.

The six other BTS members also plan to serve in the military and are “looking forward to reconvening as a group again around 2025 following their service commitment,” the company said in a statement.

Members will be given five weeks of combat training. Credit: AP

No further information on the timing of their service was given. The band members performed together in South Korea's second largest city of Busan over the weekend in support of the city’s EXPO bid, which will be their last concert as a group until they finish serving in the military, according to their label.

The announcement came after Lee Ki Sik, commissioner of the Military Manpower Administration, told lawmakers this month that it would be “desirable” for BTS members to fulfil their military duties to ensure fairness in the country’s military service.

After enlisting, Jin and other BTS members will receive five weeks of combat training before being assigned to specific units and duties, according to officials at the Military Manpower Administration, who stressed that the singers would go under the same process as other South Korean men.

Posters to celebrate member Jin's birthday. Credit: AP

Defence minister Lee Jong-sup said in August if BTS members join the military, they would likely be allowed to continue practicing and to join with the group for tours overseas.

Under South Korean law, most able-bodied men are required to perform 18-21 months of military service, but special exemptions had been granted in the past for athletes and artists who excel in certain international competitions that have been tied to national prestige.