Ukraine War: Russia Could Start Conscripting 30-Year-Olds To Boost Size Of Military

Firefighters conduct search and rescue operation in the rubbles of a destroyed residential building after a Russian missile strike in Dnipro, Ukraine, on January 15.
Firefighters conduct search and rescue operation in the rubbles of a destroyed residential building after a Russian missile strike in Dnipro, Ukraine, on January 15.

Firefighters conduct search and rescue operation in the rubbles of a destroyed residential building after a Russian missile strike in Dnipro, Ukraine, on January 15.

Russia could increase the age limit for army conscripts in an attempt to boost the size of its military.

In a further sign of Moscow’s difficulties in Ukraine, 30-year-olds could be signed up as part of the Russian army’s spring 2023 draft.

The current age limit for routine military conscription in Russia is 27.

The idea was proposed by Andrey Kartapolov, the head of the Russian State Duma Defence Committee.

According to the latest intelligence update by the UK’s Ministry of Defence, Kartapolov said the move would be intended to enable Russia to hit its target of increasing the size of its military by 30%.

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“Last year, President Putin said he supported such a move, and Russian officials are likely sounding out public reactions,” the MoD said.

“There is a realistic possibility that Russian leaders hope a change of age criteria for routine conscription could bolster personnel available to fight in Ukraine while appear less alarming to the population than announcing another round of the unpopular ‘partial mobilisation’ process.”

The news came as Russia claimed it has taken a small Ukrainian settlement called Soledar in one of the bloodiest battles of the 10-month war. Ukraine says the town is still being hotly-contested.

Meanwhile, Rishi Sunak has told Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelenskyy that the UK will send tanks to the country to help their war effort.

The prime minister confirmed the move in a phone call today with Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelenskyy.

A Downing Street spokesperson said Sunak and Zelenskyy had “reflected on the current state of Russia’s war in Ukraine, with successive Ukrainian victories pushing Russian troops back and compounding their military and morale issues”.

“They agreed on the need to seize on this moment with an acceleration of global military and diplomatic support to Ukraine,” the spokesperson said.

“The prime minister outlined the UK’s ambition to intensify our support to Ukraine, including through the provision of Challenger 2 tanks and additional artillery systems.”

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