BTS star Jin celebrates discharge from military service by hugging 1,000 fans at festival

BTS star Jin, who has been discharged from his mandatory service in the South Korean military, is celebrating his freedom by hugging 1,000 fans.

The 31-year-old K-pop star, who is the eldest member of the seven-piece band, is the first to complete his service.

He left the 5th Army Infantry Division in Yeoncheon, Gyeonggi Province, on Wednesday and was greeted by fellow BTS members J-Hope, RM, Jimin, V and Jungkook.

They had applied for special leave to attend, according to South Korean media. BTS member Suga was absent from the occasion according to the Associated Press.

The singers hugged and embraced each other, and RM played their hit single Dynamite on the saxophone.

Jin described his year and a half of service as “fun,” adding that he’d “met so many good people,” speaking in a live stream on the fan platform Weverse, broadcast from the offices of BTS’ management agency HYBE.

Jin’s first in-person appearance after the end of his service will be at a festival celebrating South Korean culture called Seoul Festa on Thursday.

At the festival, he’ll take part in a “hugging event,” embracing 1,000 lucky fans picked in a raffle, according to his record label.

He will also perform music for fans.

In South Korea, military service is mandatory for all able-bodied men between the ages of 18 and 28, however, exemptions are made for some performers and athletes – including globally recognised K-pop stars – who can defer service until they are 30.

All members of the band announced that they would serve in October 2022, entering the army across 2022 and 2023, and are expected to reunite in 2025 when they have all completed their service.

Before their military service, the band had announced they were taking a break to pursue solo projects.

BTS, an acronym of Bangtan Sonyeondan – or Beyond The Scene – are a boyband formed in 2010.

Following the release of their debut single in 2013 they have become the biggest-selling music act in South Korean history, with millions of fans around the world.

They are the first K-Pop act to achieve a number one single in the US, a number one album in the UK, and to receive a Grammy nomination.

After their first Grammy nod in 2021, they were nominated across the four most important Grammy categories – album, record, song of the year and best new artist – in 2023.

Source: Sky News

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