Vladimir Putin Trying To 'Evoke Soviet Union' With Military Training In Schools, UK Claims
Vladimir Putin chairs a Security Council meeting via a video link at the Novo-Ogaryovo state residence, outside Moscow, on January 27.
Vladimir Putin is trying to evoke memories of the Soviet Union by bringing back military training in schools, according to UK officials.
Russia’s ministry of education has announced that secondary school pupils will be given the lessons as part of a “basics of life safety” course.
It was last a compulsory part of the school curriculum in 1993, shortly after the break-up of the Soviet Union.
Pupils will be shown how to handle AK assault rifles and hand grenades, give salutes and use personal protective equipment as part of the course.
In their latest intelligence update on the war in Ukraine, the UK ministry of defence said the lessons will become mandatory from September 1.
“In addition, in December 2022, the ministry of science and higher education announced a ‘military training basics’ programme for university students,” the update said.
“The initiatives highlight the increasingly militarised atmosphere in wartime Russia, as well as being a (likely deliberate) evocation of the Soviet Union: similar training was mandatory in schools up to 1993.”
Latest Defence Intelligence update on the situation in Ukraine - 29 January 2023
Find out more about the UK government's response: https://t.co/Uq5hma9yKs
🇺🇦 #StandWithUkraine 🇺🇦 pic.twitter.com/FD9fqU8Yiz
— Ministry of Defence 🇬🇧 (@DefenceHQ) January 29, 2023
It emerged two weeks ago that Russia could increase the age limit for army conscripts in an attempt to boost the size of its military.
The current age limit for routine military conscription in Russia is 27.
But Andrey Kartapolov, the head of the Russian State Duma Defence Committee, proposed increasing that to 30.
Meanwhile, the UK has also accused the Kremlin of lying about the number of Russian casualties in a New Year’s Eve missile strike by Ukraine.
Moscow announced that 89 Russian troops died when a former school being used as temporary accommodation in Makiivka near Donetsk in eastern Ukraine was targeted on December 31.
But the MoD said the true number was “highly likely” to be more than 300.
They said “deliberate lying” by Kremlin officials was partly to blame for the huge discrepancy.