Zelensky Lowers Ukraine’s draft age

\n \n Reporting by Maria Varenikova was contributed.” \n \n In May of last year, Parliament passed legislation reducing the draft eligibility age from 27 to 25, but Mr. Zelensky had waited to sign it, presumably thinking it would not be necessary. “Three measures, including the politically controversial move of lowering the age at which men become eligible for mobilization and eliminating some medical exemptions, have been signed into law by President Volodymyr Zelensky of Ukraine in an effort to bolster his nation’s worn-out and battered army. On Tuesday, he gave in and signed the bill, which also included laws that outlawed the \”partially eligible\” medical exemption category and established an electronic database of all men in Ukraine, beginning at age 17, in an effort to target those who avoid the draft. Elections in Ukraine are postponed due to martial law.

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Three measures, including the politically controversial move of lowering the age at which men become eligible for mobilization and eliminating some medical exemptions, have been signed into law by President Volodymyr Zelensky of Ukraine in an effort to bolster his nation’s worn-out and battered army.

In May of last year, Parliament passed legislation reducing the draft eligibility age from 27 to 25, but Mr. Zelensky had waited to sign it, presumably thinking it would not be necessary. On Tuesday, he gave in and signed the bill, which also included laws that outlawed the “partially eligible” medical exemption category and established an electronic database of all men in Ukraine, beginning at age 17, in an effort to target those who avoid the draft.

A member of Parliament from the opposition European Solidarity party named Volodymyr Ariev stated, “Zelensky held it without signing because it is a very unpopular decision.”. He’s got no choice now. “.

Despite the fact that Ukraine’s army is running low on ammunition and that many of its soldiers have been serving two years of nonstop combat duty, generals in the country have warned of a wider attack in the spring or summer by Russia’s forces, who have been pressuring the front lines.

This year, military analysts say, Ukraine is expected to hold the current front lines in ground combat, at best, provided fresh American weaponry arrives; otherwise, the country faces retaliation. Ukraine intends to mobilize its army in order to maximize its efforts, and it also intends to keep Russia off balance by carrying out long-range drone strikes and sabotage operations behind enemy lines, such as Tuesday’s attacks on a Russian weapons factory and oil refinery.

When it comes to restocking its arsenal, Ukraine primarily depends on its allies, as the country has little control over the process. In the strongest hint yet that the aid could be provided despite resistance from numerous Republicans, House Speaker Mike Johnson set out the parameters for a vote on a new round of American financial and weaponry aid in Washington on Monday.

Domestically, Ukraine has made mistakes with the new mobilization guidelines.

Its Parliament retracted a draft mobilization law in January, which included harsher sanctions for individuals who evaded the draft. After being reintroduced in February, the bill was held up in Parliament for more than 4,000 amendments. By eliminating the exceptions for men pursuing a second college degree or in situations where multiple men in a family requested exemptions to care for a disabled relative, it would further expand the draft. This month, there will likely be a vote.

As of 2022, when the government last released population estimates, there were roughly 467,000 people in Ukraine who were 25 or 26 years old. This information comes from Natalia Tilikina, the director of the research group Institute of Youth. However, a large number are exempt from conscription due to their employment, disabilities, residence in occupied territory, or military service.

Ukraine has had to strike a balance between military, economic, and demographic factors when creating its mobilization plans. Although lowering the draft age will enable thousands of fit and rested soldiers to join the battle, Ukraine’s population will be at long-term risk due to the country’s demographics.

The average age of a member of the armed forces today is over 40, having ranged from 27 to 60 at the beginning of the war. All men between the ages of 18 and 60 were already forbidden from leaving the nation under martial law in case it was decided to draft them. At the age of 18, both men and women can enlist in the military.

When visiting Kyiv last month, Senator Lindsey Graham recommended that Ukraine draft men who are younger in age for the upcoming conflict. “You should be serving; you’re in a fight for your life.” he declared. “We must add more individuals to the queue. “.

The leadership of Mr. Dov Zelensky during the war has come under increasing fire from Ukrainian politicians. This week, Al Jazeera aired an interview with the former president Petro O. In an election that he claimed should only take place after the war is over, Poroshenko pledged to run for a second term. Elections in Ukraine are postponed due to martial law.

Reporting by Maria Varenikova was contributed.

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