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MOSCOW, December 10. /TASS/. The Russian Defense Ministry has managed to restore the society’s confidence in the army, Chief of the General Staff General Valery Gerasimov said on Wednesday.
“We have managed to considerably enhance the prestige of the military service and restore the society’s confidence in the army,” Gerasimov told military attaches of several countries.
According to him, a recent independent sociological research has shown that more than 86% of respondents were certain that the “Russian army is capable of defending the country against a possible military threat.”
Gerasimov said that this year, the Russian Defense Ministry has focused major attention on ensuring transparency of its activity and expansion of interaction with the civil society. In particular, comprehensive media coverage of the activity of the Russian Armed Forces has contributed to the army’s greater openness.
The Russian Defense Ministry concentrated considerable efforts in 2014 on the introduction of new approaches to the Armed Forces’ manning, Gerasimov went on to say.
He said new methods envisage the quality of recruitment, training and service of contract soldiers. “At present, the Armed Forces are 90% manned. It is planned to increase the figure to 90% by the end of 2015,” he said.
According to General Gerasimov, it is planned to liquidate the shortage of personnel “both by improving the call-up system and by increasing the number of contract servicemen.” “At least 50,000 citizens are recruited for contract service annually starting from 2012,” he said.
“As a result, by the end of 2014, the number of military contract personnel will reach 295,000,” Gerasimov said. “As a matter of priority, they will fill the duty positions of sergeants and the positions crucial for military units’ combat capability, as well as the positions of specialists ensuring the preparation, maintenance and use of sophisticated armaments and military equipment.”