MOSCOW, October 1. /TASS/. Young people from the Crimean Peninsula, a former Ukrainian region that recently joined Russia, will be drafted into the Russian army during the next spring conscription, the head of the Main Organizational-Mobilization Department of the Russian Armed Forces General Staff, Lt. Gen. Vasily Tonkoshkurov confirmed.
“A transitional period is now underway in Crimea and Sevastopol. Preparation for the draft is proceeding on a full scale,” Tonkoshkurov said on the Rossiya 24 television channel.
He specified that next spring, there are plans to “carry out the draft according to established procedure”.
The fall draft kicked off in Russia on Wednesday. Some 154,000 people are to be conscripted.
Earlier, it was reported the draft in Crimea will start not earlier than next spring.
The Crimean Peninsula, where most residents are Russians, refused to recognize the legitimacy of authorities brought to power amid riots during a coup in Ukraine in February. Crimea adopted a declaration of independence on March 11.
It held a referendum on March 16, in which most voters chose to secede from Ukraine and join the Russian Federation. Russian President Vladimir Putin signed the reunification deal March 18.
Work to integrate the Crimean Peninsula into Russia’s economic, financial, credit, legal, state power, military conscription and infrastructure systems is actively underway now that Crimea has become part of Russia.
In the Soviet Union, Crimea used to be part of Russia until 1954, when Nikita Khrushchev, the first secretary of the USSR’s Communist Party, transferred it to Ukraine's jurisdiction as a gift.