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3 Oct, 2023 13:44

50,000 signed up for Russian military in September – Shoigu

There are no plans for an additional mobilization in the country, the defense minister has said
50,000 signed up for Russian military in September – Shoigu

The Russian military has enough troops to carry out its operation in Ukraine, thanks to a large number of volunteers, Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu has said.

“The General Staff has no plans for additional mobilization,” the Russian minister assured military commanders during a conference on Tuesday.

One of the reasons for that is “the firm patriotic stance of our citizens, who are actively joining the ranks of defenders of the fatherland,” he stressed.

“In September alone, more than 50,000 citizens signed contracts” for military service, Shoigu said.

According to the minister, the overall number of those who joined the Russian Armed Forces or other voluntary units on their own accord since the start of the year has exceeded 335,000 people.

He added that the regular autumn draft, which kicked off in the country on Sunday, has been progressing steadily. The plan is to call up 130,000 people for compulsory military service, Shoigu said, stressing that none of those recruits will be deployed in the area of the military operation in Ukraine.

Moscow called up some 300,000 reservists between September 21 and October 31, 2022. Since then, the country’s top officials and commanders have repeatedly denied speculation in the Western and Ukrainian media that another mobilization is being planned.

Speaking about the situation on the ground, Shoigu said that “through their active actions, our troops significantly weakened the enemy’s combat potential and inflicted serious damage” to Kiev’s forces.

Ukraine has been conducting a counteroffensive along the front line since early June, but so far can only report the capture of a handful of small villages some distance from the main Russian defense barriers. Russian President Vladimir Putin said last month that Kiev had already lost more than 71,000 troops and over 540 tanks since the beginning of the push, while failing to achieve any significant gains on the battlefield.