Ukraine Lowers Conscription Age In Order To Get More Troops

( – Ukraine has lowered its conscription age from 27 to 25 to boost its troop numbers as the war with Russia rages on. The Ukrainian Parliament passed the legislation last year, but President Volodymyr Zelensky only signed it into law in early April. He did not comment on why he took so long.

The issue is sensitive in Ukraine, as many men reportedly try to avoid the draft by hiding or using any bribes available. Commanders say they are short of troops and ammunition and need more resources to launch offensive operations against Russia. Media reports suggest Russian forces are in a similar position and are unable to take advantage of Ukraine’s shortages because they are experiencing them too.

A Kremlin spokesman, however, said recently that Russian fortunes had turned, and the country enjoyed an enlistment boost in March. Moscow claims 16,000 signed up in the ten days that followed the ISIS-K attack on a concert hall in the city. More than 100 people died in the attack by an Afghan ISIS splinter group, and the Kremlin said this motivated thousands of men to fight for their country.

Both sides of the conflict are cautious about announcing their death tolls, but a US intelligence assessment last December said 315,000 Russians, or 90% of the pre-war total, had been killed or injured. Russia did not confirm this figure.

Similarly, Kyiv keeps its numbers under wraps. However, a civic group claimed there had been 25,000 Ukrainian fatalities by November 2023. A New York Times report, published around the same time and based on information from an anonymous American source, put the number closer to 70,000.

Historian Yaroslav Tynchenko and volunteer Herman Shapovalenko have compiled a “Book of Memory,” which contains the names of 24,500 Ukrainian troops. Both men, however, acknowledge that the true number is probably higher and does not include civilian losses or an estimated 15,000 soldiers classified as “missing.”

President Zelensky has declined to comment on any of the figures suggested.

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