K-pop idol Suga of BTS begins his mandatory military service today, making him the third member of the K-pop sensation to join South Korea’s armed forces.
Previously, Jin and J-Hope enlisted and are currently serving in the military. However, unlike his bandmates Jin and J-Hope, Suga was deemed unfit for regular combat duty and will serve as a social service agent, news agency Yonhap reported.
The reason for Suga's assignment to an alternative service was not disclosed, but it is believed to be related to a surgery he had in 2020, according to Yonhap.
Suga will be serving for a period of 21 months, instead of 18 months.
On the night of September 21, Suga penned a heartfelt note for fans ahead of leaving.
"It's about time. I'll be back after faithfully finishing my service," the 30-year-old rapper and music producer wrote in Korean on the K-pop fan community platform Weverse.
Promising to meet again in 2025, Min Yoon-gi (Suga) wrote: “Hello. This is Suga. I came to give my greetings! I've been able to come here (so far) because of Army (BTS fans). And now the time has come. I'll come after finishing my service sincerely. Be careful of the cold weather from the season changing to autumn. Let's keep being healthy and let us all meet in 2025. Army, always, thank you and love you.”
Emotional, fans took to social media to say that they would wait for Suga’s return.
Many shared compilation videos of the singer, saying they will miss him. Phrases like “Yoongi is worth the wait”, “#To2025_WithSUGA”, and “The King (referring to Suga) will return”, were top global trends on X (formerly Twitter).
On September 20, BTS agency Hybe announced that all seven members had renewed their contract with the agency and label, BigHit Music, to stay together beyond 2025.
Ahead of enlistment, Suga dropped his first official solo album titled ‘D-Day’. Following the album release, he completed his solo tour 'Suga Agust D Tour', which became one of the biggest sold-out acts for any K-pop soloist.