Vladimir Putin: Army will be made a contract army gradually

President Putin has said that the Russian armed forces will be transferred to a contract basis gradually. The President said this at a meeting with seamen on board the capital anti-submarine ship Marshal Shaposhnikov. The President noted that in the future contract service would make up the core of the army, but at the same time not a single mainland army is manned entirely by contract servicemen, he said. He gave as an example the experiment of transferring the Pskov airborne division to a contract basis. President Putin said that at first it seemed that money to pay for the job was all that was necessary, but then it turned out that for contract soldiers, most of whom are people of mature age who have families or are planning to have families, barracks cannot be proper housing. New housing has to be built.

"This is a different type of calculation," said Putin. We have to work, and not talk on the given subject, said the President. He also noted that the decision on the transition to a contract basis would be taken after the results of the experiment in the Pskov division have been summed up.

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