(ANSA) – RIGA, July 06 – Latvian Defense Minister Artis Pabriks announced yesterday evening that the Baltic state will restore compulsory military service, in the wake of rising tension with neighboring Russia over Moscow’s war in Ukraine.
“The current military system in Latvia has reached its limits. In the meantime, we have no reason to believe that Russia will change its behavior,” Pabrix told reporters.
Latvia abolished its compulsory military service a few years after joining the NATO defense alliance.
Since 2007, the EU member’s military is made up of professional soldiers, along with National Guard volunteers who serve part-time in the infantry on weekends.
The country of less than two million people, which borders both Belarus and Russia, has 7,500 active-duty soldiers and members of the National Guard, supported by 1,500 NATO soldiers.
Pabrix said compulsory military service will apply to men and take effect next year, with several options available to meet the requirements. The Latvian defense minister also announced plans to build another military base near the southeastern city of Gikapuls, which is located closer to the Russian border than the current Adazi base. (Dealing).
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