Russian army to replace contract servicemen with conscripts

09:43, May 27, 2010      

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The number of servicemen on contracts in the Russian army would be reduced "substantially," a source in the Russian Defense Ministry told the Interfax news agency Wednesday.

By July 1, all servicemen on contracts, except those who worked in the most vital positions, would be demobilized, the source said.

"The most vital positions" were those such as commanders of combat vehicles, personnel carriers' drivers and gun-layers among others, the spokesman explained.

The vacant positions would be filled by conscripts and civil workers, he said.

Earlier on Wednesday, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev discussed the quality and composition of the military equipment Russia exported with high-ranking officials from the Federal Security Service, Ministries of Finance and Foreign Affairs, the Security Council, the intelligence service and military industrial complex, said the Kremlin website.

According to the head of Russian state arms exporter Rosoboronexport, Valeri Varlamov, who took part in the meeting, Russian arms exports grew by 700 million to 800 million U.S. dollars in 2009.

Russia sells its weapons to 80 countries and Rosoboronexport signs 1,000-1,700 deals every year.

Source: Xinhua


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