Four months after announcing plans to pursue a solo career, the members of the K-pop sensation BTS are officially preparing to undergo mandatory military service in their country.Hybe agency, consisting of seven people, recently published news on social networks that appeared after many supporters of ARMI complained about the laws on conscription in South Korea and, as a result, on BTS. In a country with a population of about 52 million people, all able-bodied men must enlist in the military for about two years, usually starting from the age of 18-28.
Of course, given the significant commercial success, cultural reach, and extremely loyal BTS fan base, there was enough opposition to mandatory enrollment as the 28th anniversary of the oldest member of the group, Gene, approached. Lawmakers eventually created an exception that allowed some artists (needless to say, BTS among them) to delay filing until they are 30 years old, and there have been reports and conversations for a long time about a complete waiver of the requirement for BTS.
But with BTS taking a break to lead solo projects and Jin turning 30 on December 4, the people behind “Butter” are ready to grit their teeth and band together before reuniting in 2025, according to Hybe.
The Seoul-headquartered company, which used Universal Music to release solo albums by BTS members, made the announcement in a message posted (in English, Japanese and Chinese) on various Big Hit Music social accounts. At the time of writing this article, the post from many hours ago has gained more than 530,000 likes, almost 200,000 retweets and about 30,000 responses on Twitter.
“BIGHIT MUSIC is proud to announce today that BTS members are currently planning to do military service,” Hybe wrote. “After the phenomenal concert in support of Busan’s bid for the 2030 World Expo, when everyone embarks on a solo effort, the perfect time has come, and BTS members are honored to serve.
“Since the creation of BTS more than a decade ago, the band has achieved international success, broken records and brought K-Pop into the global stratosphere. BIGHIT Music focused on the momentous moment when it will be possible to respect the needs of the country and for these healthy young people to serve with their compatriots, and this is now.
“Band member Jin will begin the process as soon as his solo release schedule is completed at the end of October. He will then follow the enrollment procedure established by the Korean government. Other members of the group plan to perform military service based on their individual plans. Both the company and the BTS members are looking forward to reuniting as a group around 2025 after fulfilling their service obligations.
“The release of their first anthology album earlier this year opened the way for participants to spend some time exploring individual projects. As part of the HYBE family, we support and encourage our artists and are very proud that now each of them will have time to explore their unique interests and fulfill their duty, benefiting the country they call home.
“Yet To Come (The Most Beautiful Moment)” is more than a track from their last album, it’s a promise, there’s a lot more to come from BTS,” concludes the long text.
If BTS does reunite in 2025, members other than Jin should register as early as possible; Suga will turn 30 in March 2023, but J-Hope’s 30th birthday will come in February 2024, and RM will turn 30 in September of the same year. Jimin and Wee are now 26 years old, and Jungkook is 25.