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U.S. military starts curfew after rape claims

Story highlights

  • Two soliders have been acussed of rapes in September
  • "I offer the victim, her family and the Korean people my sincere regret," military officials says
  • The old curfew was rescinded back in 2010
  • That curfew had been in place for 9 years
The United States military has re-instituted a curfew on service members in South Korea after two soldiers have been accused of raping local girls.
One of the cases involves 21-year-old soldier who allegedly broke into a girl's home on September 17, U.S. Forces Korea, said in a statement.
The soldier, who was identified only as "R", is accused of raping the girl and stealing a computer from the home.
"He had been drinking with her earlier in the evening and walked her home," the military statement said. "Police say the accused says it was consensual but admits to stealing her computer. Police are now studying DNA evidence and CCTV footage."
Another soldier, identified only as "I" is accused of raping a 18-year-old on September 24, U.S. Forces Korea said. The U.S. military has handed that soldier over to local South Korea authorities.
"I offer the victim, her family and the Korean people my sincere regret for this incident. We fully expect our soldiers to maintain the highest standards of professionalism and conduct in the community," said Maj. Gen. Edward C. Cardon.
The commander of U.S. Forces Korea, Gen. James D. Thurman, said the curfew would be in place from midnight to 5 a.m. Monday to Friday and from 3.a.m. to 5 a.m. on Saturday, Sunday and holidays. It will be in place for the next 30 days, Thurman said.
"Given the incidents that have occurred over the last several months, I'm reinstating the curfew to assess current conditions," Thurman said. "The overwhelming majority of our personnel make the right choices and conduct themselves in a professional and courteous manner."
Military officials had rescinded the previous curfew on July 2, 2010. That curfew had been in place for nine years.