Armenia starts early winter conscription due to risk of shortage of soldiers

20 September 2019 15:47 (UTC+04:00)

By Abdul Kerimkhanov

The winter conscription in Armenia will begin much earlier this year. Instead of January 1-January 31, this time Armenian government decided to start this unpopular event with the Armenian youth earlier, namely on December 16. It will last, as usual until January 31, 2020.

Such New Year's haste is unpleasant for both future conscripts and military conscription office staff. Instead of preparing for the holidays with the family, the employees of the military registration will be forced to travel all over Armenia to handle conscriptions.

The reason for this haste is the risk of a shortage in the army. Recently, soldiers, having heard about the call, began leaving Armenia.

In this case, how Armenian Armed Forces should fill the gaps? Of course, it is possible to invite contractors, but it's too complicated for a country with a tight budget.

First of all, army has to pay money for contract workers. Secondly, these contractors, according to the Armenian Defense Ministry, are prone to suicide.

Artsrun Hovhannisyan, press secretary of the Armenian Defense Ministry, even stated the need for “in-depth research” of suicides, since the ministry cannot find the reasons for this addiction.

The question arises, what is the reason for such an irresistible desire of potential conscripts to escape from the Armenian army? The answer is simple; understanding that they can be put in a situation where they will be in danger. If a soldier finds himself in the territory of occupied Nagorno-Karabakh, which is the territory of Azerbaijan, then he is likely to be killed or injured.

That is why the Armenian government decided to present an unpleasant “surprise” to the draftees. If someone already planned to flee abroad in the late December before the holidays, Armenian military officials will hand over the summons right at the bus station.

The decision on the draft, in theory, should have been unexpected. However, it somehow leaked to the media. This is proven by the fact that getting military secrets in Armenia is not so difficult.

Another version of such an increase in the draft period is due to the fact that the country's leadership decided to get an army of increased strength for at least a month. In fact, while the old-timers have not been demobilized, and the new conscripts will already arrive in military units.

Oddly enough, young people will be used for peaceful purposes. The fact is that while Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan is lying to his people about his “great” achievements in the economy, the country's infrastructure is in decline.

For several weeks now, due to the conflict between the Yerevan Municipalityand the Sanitek garbage collection company, the city's garbage cans are full. Such an environment becomes favorable for wildlife.

Meanwhile, the environmental situation in the capital of Armenia is becoming unbearable. Naira Zohrabyan, Chairperson of the Standing Committee on Protection Human Rights and Public Affairs, has complained that homeless dogs gather in groups in different places of the city and even at schools, which is unsafe for children.

Judging by the fact that the Yerevan Municipality did not buy enough garbage trucks to clean up Yerevan streets from waste by its own resources, Armenian capital has every chance to celebrate the New Year with heaps of rotting garbage. Therefore, to clean the capital, soldiers will be taken away as labor force. In this case, Yerevan’s guests should not be surprised when they see a lot of young people in military uniform cleaning up the garbage.

As for the Armenian soldiers’ use in the possible provocation in occupied territories of Azerbaijan, it is an unlikely scenario. This is due to heavy losses Armenia suffered during the four-day April war in 2016 that started with the provocation of Armenian forces but ended with the victory of Azerbaijani army that liberated more than 2,000 hectares of lands. Armenia has started to realize that Azerbaijan far surpasses them in terms of military strength.


Abdul Kerimkhanov is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow him on Twitter: @AbdulKerim94 

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