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27 Dec. 2023


Mobilization and demobilization in Ukraine: what changes does the government propose in the new draft law?



Mobilization and demobilization in Ukraine: what changes does the government propose in the new draft law?

The Cabinet of Ministers has submitted a draft law to the Verkhovna Rada that would amend the procedure for mobilization, demobilization and military registration. Find out what key provisions will change and what is known about the new sanctions for service evasion

Legal advice on entering and leaving Ukraine
Legal advice on entering and leaving Ukraine

On December 25, the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine registered the long-awaited draft law that the government has been working on for the past few months. It is important to note that the military also contributed to the government's draft, offering the authorities their vision of the mobilization and demobilization process.

In an explanatory note, Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal notes that the adoption of this document will "create conditions for the proper manning of combat units," "improve the process of manning the Armed Forces" and "contribute to the restoration and development of a society based on the values of patriotism and loyalty to the state."

So, what are the main changes proposed by the document and how it will change the lives of Ukrainians - we will tell you further in the article.

Main provisions of the draft law on mobilization: conscription age, calls and the right to deferment 

1. Reduction of the conscription age from 27 to 25 years.

2. Abolition of conscription. Instead, it is proposed to introduce the concept of basic military service - a special compulsory course for all Ukrainians aged 18 to 25 to acquire practical skills. In peacetime, the course will last up to 5 months, in wartime, the term will be determined by a presidential decree.

3. Introduction of an "electronic office of the conscript". Thus, within 60 days from the date of the start of mobilization or within 20 days from the date of its extension, Ukrainians liable for military service will have to update their data at the ASC or military registration and enlistment office (TSC) or in an online electronic cabinet. Thus, if the draft law is adopted, men who have traveled abroad will also have 30 days to update their personal data and current address of residence.

4. Simplification of the procedure for serving subpoenas. Summonses will be able to be served in person (by military and police officers), through an electronic cabinet and by e-mail.

5. Restriction of the right to deferment. In particular, we are talking about changes for "students" and "caregivers". Thus, only those students who receive a higher level of education than previously obtained (for example, bachelors who want to obtain a master's degree) will be able to receive a deferment. In addition, those who care for disabled relatives (except for caring for their own parents who "need constant care") will not be able to get a deferral. It is noted that it must be the 1st or 2nd disability group.

6. Abolition of the concept of "limited fitness for service". Thus, only disabled persons of groups 1 and 2 will be able to receive a deferment, and those who have been recognized as limitedly fit for service will have to undergo a medical examination again within 6 months. At the same time, military enlistment offices will be able to "send materials to law enforcement agencies on Ukrainian citizens who evade military registration."

At the same time, the government wants to cancel the reservation for all civil servants and employees of self-government bodies. Thus, the new document proposes to reserve only civil servants of category "A", i.e. top-level officials. And no more than 50% of the rest of the officials subject to military service.

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What sanctions does the government propose for evaders and violators?

All citizens of Ukraine aged 18 to 60 (who are and have been removed from military registration) will be required to carry a military registration document and an identity document at all times. And the said package of documents will have to be presented at the request of a military registration and enlistment office or police officer.

In this case, violators will be able to be detained for up to three hours (to draw up a report) and for up to three days (to identify and clarify the circumstances of the offense). The process of checking documents will be filmed by authorized persons.

Men who have traveled abroad, with some exceptions, will also have to present the above documents in order to receive services at Ukrainian consular offices.

In addition, if reservists and persons liable for military service sabotage their military duties, they will be entered into the Unified Register of Debtors and sanctions will be imposed. In particular, the proposed restrictions include:

- a ban on leaving Ukraine;

- a ban on real estate transactions;

- restriction of the right to drive a vehicle and obtain a driver's license;

- restrictions on the use and disposal of funds and other valuables, as well as the inability to enter into credit and loan agreements;

- suspension of benefits and services from the state.

If a person liable for military service evades conscription during martial law, he or she will be punished by imprisonment for a term of 3 to 5 years. The government also proposes to increase the amount of fines for violations of the legislation on defense, military duty and mobilization by 16-20 times.

Will there be furloughs and demobilization in Ukraine?

The government proposes to introduce an additional paid vacation for soldiers released from captivity lasting 90 days. Such servicemen will be able to resign at will and will not be subject to re-mobilization.

The government also wants to allow all servicemen to take more than 15 days of vacation at a time (i.e., a serviceman will be able to use all 30 days of vacation allowed at a time).

In addition, the registered document proposes to grant the right to demobilization to servicemen who have served continuously in the army during martial law for the last 36 months, as well as to those who have disability groups 1 and 2 and do not want to continue serving. Soldiers who served during martial law and were discharged will be exempt from re-mobilization for two years from the date of discharge.

At the same time, according to the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine Valeriy Zaluzhny, demobilization will be possible only under two conditions: if there is no escalation at the front and there are people to replace those dismissed.

According to preliminary information, the government will start considering the draft law in January 2024, and any of its provisions may be changed before final adoption.

We remind you! The Kyiv City Military Administration once again emphasizes that the protection and safety of citizens is a priority during the war. Read more about what is happening in Kyiv - counter-sabotage measures or TSC with summonses, as well as how long vehicle and document checks will last in the capital here.

Photo: UNIAN

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