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Poroshenko signs law to increase Ukrainian army strength to 250,000 servicemen

March 25, 2015, 14:26 UTC+3 KIEV
The defense minister earlier said Ukraine planned to additionally create six mechanized brigades, a mountain and infantry regiment, three artillery brigades and two army aviation brigades in 2015
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© EPA/ROMAN PILIPEY

KIEV, March 25. /TASS/. Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko has signed a law to boost the Ukrainian army’s numerical strength to 250,000 servicemen, the press office of the Verkhovna Rada (the country’s parliament) reported on Wednesday.

The Ukrainian parliament passed the law with 270 votes on March 5 "to legally regulate the numerical strength of the Armed Forces of Ukraine and ensure the timely deployment of a grouping of troops (forces) to contain and repel an armed aggression and eliminate (localize, neutralize) an armed conflict."

The Ukrainian army had a numerical strength of about 168,000 as of early 2014, including about 125,000 servicemen, and stood at 232,000 at the end of last year, according to media reports.

Ukrainian Defense Minister Stepan Poltorak earlier said there were plans to boost personnel to 250,000 soon.

The defense minister said Ukraine planned to additionally create six mechanized brigades, a mountain and infantry regiment, three artillery brigades and two army aviation brigades in 2015.

Ukraine started a fourth wave of mobilization for the army on January 20. The campaign was set to draft 50,000 Ukrainians into the armed forces.

Kiev plans to hold several more rounds of mobilization in April and June. Overall, Ukraine’s Defense Ministry intends to call up 100,000-150,000 people for active service in 2015.

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