Following the news that South Korea is considering suspension of the previously agreed-upon border truce with North Korea; 

Harshavardhan Dabbiru, Defense Analyst at GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company, offers his view:

In the wake of the surprise coordinated attacks and infiltrations by Hamas in Israel, South Korea is mulling the suspension of the 2018 military agreement with North Korea and resuming frontline border surveillance. South Korea’s move is driven by growing concerns over continued North Korean intrusions and frequent missile tests. Maintaining frontline surveillance over the Korean Demilitarized Zone (DMZ), which runs for about 240km, is vital for South Korea, especially with events such as violations across the South Korean boundaries by North Korean drones and naval vessels.

“The suspension of the agreement, if it happens, will allow South Korea to utilise its surveillance assets to maintain a constant watch over its neighbour from the border and deploy air-defense assets quickly in anticipation of potential intrusions. South Korea will also likely increase its focus on bolstering its surveillance capabilities by procuring additional surveillance assets, including radars, electro-optical/infra-red (EO/IR) systems, unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), and intelligence surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) aircraft to monitor adversary movements along the DMZ and maritime boundaries.

“According to GlobalData, South Korea is projected to cumulatively spend about $293 billion on defence between 2023 and 2028. With events unfolding on the other side of the world between Israel and Palestine, threats of similar escalations along the Korean DMZ will likely make South Korean policymakers slightly anxious, which, in turn, will lead to a further increase in their defense spending.”

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