Russian Defense Minister Not Ruling Out Abolition Of Military Conscription In Future

Russian Defense Minister Not Ruling Out Abolition of Military Conscription in Future

MOSCOW (UrduPoint News / Sputnik - 22nd September, 2019) Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu told the Moskovskij Komsomolets newspaper that it was possible that compulsory military service in Russia would be abolished one day, but noted that he did not think such a decision would be right.

"It is possible, but I do not think that it would be a correct decision. I am strongly convinced that we must preserve some number of army conscripts anyway. Any sovereign state should have a civilian reserve for mobilization apart from the military professionals," Shoigu said in an interview, when asked a relevant question.

The minister noted the compulsory military service was a very useful tool to organize military training for civilians and let them learn a military profession directly in the army.

According to Shoigu, the number of contract servicemen was already prevailing over the army conscripts among the privates and sergeants.

"In the future, the balance will be shifting toward the professionals more and more," the minister added.

The idea of abolishing the mandatory military service has been circulating for many years in Russia. Since 2008, the number of contract servicemen has been gradually increasing as part of the military reform. In 2012, after the presidential election, Russian President Vladimir Putin issued a decree to ensure the increase of the number of contract servicemen in the Russian army by 50,000 per year.

In October 2017, Putin said that the compulsory service would become irrelevant soon. In April 2019, the president said that the mandatory service would gradually become obsolete.

Your Thoughts and Comments