Russian President Vladimir Putin has ordered a new highly trained military reserve force, in order to increase Russia’s military readiness at a time when tension with the West over Ukraine is at an all time high.
The new reserve force will have more training that existing Russian military reserves, and personnel will be paid a monthly wage.
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Russia already has several million military reservists consisting of ex-servicemen, but they do little training as there are restrictions on how often they can be called up.
Defense Ministry officials have previously said that the new reserve force was envisaged at around 5,000 men to begin with, a small figure in a country with around 750,000 frontline troops.
The creation of the new reserve force had been delayed by a lack of financing, Russian media reported. Putin’s decree ordered the government to find financing for the new force from the existing defense ministry budget.