Kazakhstan to introduce "defence training" for all

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Kazakhstan will introduce universal military training for all adult citizens, according to a government decree published on 2nd August.

"The goal of universal military training of citizens is to attract the population to civil defence activities, prepare for necessary contingencies, and build up the armed forces in the period of martial law," the document said.

Training will be compulsory for males aged 16 to 60 years, and women between 18 and 45 years who are childless or whose children are older than 10 years.

The programme will consist of 25 hours training, with the content depending on participants' place of work, study, and place of residence.

The training will include first aid, tactical training (basics of fighting organisation and combat), firearms training, engineering training, military topography, and general military force regulations.

Male citizens of Kazakhstan are already subject to a twelve-month conscription period in the armed forces. This was reduced from 24-months by the Military Obligation and Military Service Act of July 2005.

This years' round of conscription started on 1st October, with more than 14, 000 men called up for medical tests, aged from 18 to 27.

Chairman of the Chiefs of Staff Commission, Saken Zhassuzakov, said that between only 3 and 7 per cent of these will actually be recruited to the armed forces, filling 30-35 per cent of "soldier and sergeant positions". "The best of them, both physically and psychologically, with education and professions are called into the Kazakhstan army these days,” Zhassuzakov said.

Sources: RIA Novosti: Kazakhtstan to start defence training for all, 9 August 2012; CA News: Kazakhstan has launched autumn conscription into army, 2nd October 2012; Conscience and Peace Tax International: Submission to the 102nd Session of the Human Rights Committee: July 2011, Kazakhstan, May 2011; Tengri News: Short men will not be recruited to the Kazakhstan army, 2 October 2012

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