CAMP RED CLOUD, South Korea (Oct. 5, 2012) -- The Department of the Army announced Sept. 4 the relocation of the 23rd Chemical Battalion from Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash., to Camp Stanley in Uijeongbu, South Korea.

The 23rd Chemical Battalion was previously stationed in the Republic of Korea, but transitioned to the U.S. during a realignment of forces in 2004. This relocation, scheduled to be complete by March 2013, is part of planned enhancements to 2nd Infantry Division and U.S. forces in the Republic of Korea, which will bring about 300 new Soldiers to Camp Stanley.

The 23rd Chemical Battalion's 61st Chemical Company, 62nd Chemical Company, and Headquarters and Headquarters Detachment will provide Nuclear, Biological, and Chemical reconnaissance, equipment decontamination and consequence management assistance to support U.S. and Republic of Korea, or ROK, military forces.

This action supports U.S. Army initiatives involving U.S. forces conducting a sustainable pace of presence operations abroad, reinforces the U.S. Department of Defense's rebalance to the Asia-Pacific Region and reinforces America's commitment to the ROK-U.S. Alliance. These activities reinforce deterrence, help build the capacity and competence of U.S., allied, and partner forces for internal and external defense, strengthen alliance cohesion, and increase U.S. influence.

The 23rd Chemical Battalion will be assigned to 2ID, the only permanently forward-stationed division in the Army, and further attached to the 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team headquartered at Camp Hovey in Dongducheon, South Korea. Relocating the 23rd Chemical Battalion within 2ID is strictly defensive and designed to increase readiness to defend the ROK, protect the region, and maintain stability on the Korean peninsula, division officials said.

In Korea, like no other place on the globe, the potential for large-scale, full-spectrum conflict against the U.S. and its allies exists on a daily basis, officials said. They said the 23rd Chemical Battalion brings specialized experience and expertise to 2ID in conducting operations to counter chemical, biological, radioactive, nuclear, and high-yield explosive threats.

"As we stand shoulder to shoulder with our ROK allies, we are dedicated to ensuring that our Soldiers are organized, equipped and trained for any threat they may face," said Maj. Gen. Edward C. Cardon, commanding general, 2nd Infantry Division.