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Star Discharged After Brief Stint With Frontline Unit

2006/06/02 Source

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The Army on Friday confirmed it is discharging the actor Won Bin after the discharge review board on Thursday approved the decision.

Won Bin returns to civilian life a mere 191 days after he headed off for his military service, where he attracted much publicity by volunteering for a guard post at the border with North Korea. Won will be discharged on June 7.

Won Bin started his compulsory military service on Nov. 29 and served in the border guards or GOP that are part of the Seventh brigade in Hwacheon, Gangwon Province.

When Won, who has long had trouble with his knees, went on leave in March, he was diagnosed at a civilian hospital with a rupture of his anterior cruciate ligament (ACL). He returned to service, but a visit to the military hospital confirmed the diagnosis. On April 14, the actor underwent surgery.

After surgery, the actor went through rehabilitation at a military hospital, where he received confirmation that he was eligible for discharge. Currently on leave in Seoul, the actor returns to the his unit on Monday, only to be discharged on Wednesday.

Following surgery, the actor has had to wear a knee brace, which will have to remain on for another two months.

Won's agency said it had yet to hear directly from him. "In this situation, he has to focus on his recovery. It's not the time to discuss a timetable for return to the entertainment industry", it said.

A ruptured knee ligament takes around one year to heal, so Won's return to acting is unlikely to happen before the first half of next year. The actor could face some negative publicity due to his sudden discharge.

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