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Russia Raises Upper-Age Limit for Military Reservists

A Russian soldier. Russian Defense Ministry

President Vladimir Putin on Monday signed into law a bill to raise the upper age limit for military reservists eligible for mobilization by five years.

The amendments to Russia’s law on military duty and military service introduce a four-year transition period — between 2024 and 2028 — during which the reservist age limit will be gradually raised.

The changes come as Russian authorities have sought to boost troop numbers amid a growing manpower shortage in Ukraine. 

For senior officers, the age limit for reservists eligible for mobilization will eventually become 65, while for junior officers it will be raised to 60.

Soldiers, sailors, sergeants, petty officers, warrant officers and midshipmen in Russia’s military reserve forces will be eligible for mobilization up to the age of 55.

For high-ranking officers, the upper age limit of 70 years remains unchanged.

The changes also allow Russia’s military to sign contracts with foreign citizens under the age of 52.

Putin endorsed Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu’s proposal in December to increase Russia’s combat personnel by 30% from 1.15 million to 1.5 million.

Another bill introduced last week raises the conscription age limit — also endorsed by Putin — from the current range of men aged 18-27 to 21-30.

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