June 15 (UPI) -- Display of the Confederate battle flag was banned by the chief of U.S. Forces Korea on Monday.
The flag has been banned in installation work places, common and public areas, building exteriors, clothing and vehicle bumpers, and applies to service members, their families,contractors and all who have access to USFK bases, officials said.
"While I acknowledge some might view it as a symbol of regional pride, many others in our force see it as a painful reminder of hate, bigotry, treason, and devaluation of humanity," Gen. Robert Abrams wrote in a memo.
"Regardless of perspective, one thing is clear: it has the power to inflame feelings of racial division. We cannot have that division among us," Adams wrote.
Abrams' order comes as the U.S. military confronts the display of Confederate memorabilia, symbols that are regarded by many as racist.
The flag, depicting 13 white stars within a blue "X" design, has been a fixture of white nationalist iconography.
The ban on Monday follows similar action by the U.S. Marine Corps, the Navy said on June 9 that it is crafting a ban and the Army said that it would consider renaming 10 bases named after Confederate generals, notably Fort Hood, Texas, and Fort Bragg, N.C.
President Donald Trump quickly responded by saying he would "not even consider" the name changes.
The U. S. military's ban of display of the Confederate flag comes as the civilian sector is debating its symbolism following the death of George Floyd in May at the hands of a police officer and the resulting national protest involving the "Black Lives Matter" movement.
At least 114 Confederate symbols, notably statues of Confederate military and government leaders, have been removed from public view since 2015.