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The call to compulsory military service will be suspended in 2013. The army is to be based on contract principle only, defense minister Pavlo Lebedev said, congratulating the military men and the Ukrainian Armed Forces staff, veterans of the Armed Forces and their families on the Christmas and New Year holidays, the Defense Ministry press service informs.
"In the new year we will face new, large-scale tasks. Ukrainian President has outlined the further reform and development of the Armed Forces. Ukrainian army is undergoing fundamental changes. The structure and managing of the Armed Forces will be reconsidered, the system of training will be improved, the call to military service will be suspended. The army is to be based on contract principle only, as it is done today in the leading world countries," Lebedev said.
The defense minister added that the changes will relate not only to these strategic issues. "Military reform is not limited to changes in the structure of the Armed Forces, its numerical strength and the principle of recruitment. Maximum attention will be focused on the tasks posed by the country's leadership on equipping the armed forces with new and modernized weapons and military equipment, the intensification of combat training and advanced training of personnel, provision of social guarantees for soldiers and their families, participation in international peacekeeping and security operations," the minister said.
"The coming year will be very important and busy. We will face hard work and very responsible tasks, for which we need mobilizing all human and material resources. I am convinced that together we will overcome any difficulties on the way to the goal," Lebedev summed up.