Russia recruitment drive ‘unlikely to improve combat power’
The British Ministry of Defence said that a new Kremlin-ordered drive to recruit more personnel to the Russian military “is unlikely to make substantive progress towards increasing Russia’s combat power in Ukraine.”
On 25 August, Vladimir Putin issued a new decree increasing the overall number of personnel in the Russian armed forces: raising it by nearly 140,000.
The decree also instructed the Russian government to provide the funding to make this increase happen.
It’s unclear whether recruiters would try to make their quotas by signing up new volunteers – called ‘contract’ soldiers – or if they would simply increase their annual targets for the conscription draft.
There have been numerous reports that Russian military officials have been offering contracts to prisoners with a promise that they’ll get out of jail if they join the army.
“In any case, under the legislation currently in place, the decree is unlikely to make substantive progress towards increasing Russia’s combat power in Ukraine,” the latest British military intelligence assessment concludes.
“This is because Russia has lost tens of thousands of troops; very few new contract servicemen are being recruited, and conscripts are technically not obliged to serve outside of Russian territory.”