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“The Swedish government has decided to re-activate conscription from January 1, 2018,” the statement from the government said, adding that the conscription is “gender neutral” and will include both women and men.
According to the announcement, recruitment to the Armed Forces “will be both voluntary and conscription. Individual motivation, interest and will should to be considered as much as possible.
“The security environment in Europe and in Sweden's vicinity has deteriorated and the all-volunteer recruitment hasn't provided the Armed Forces with enough trained personnel. The re-activating of the conscription is needed for military readiness.”
“We have had trouble staffing the military units on a voluntary basis and that needs to be addressed somehow,” Swedish Defense Minister Peter Hultqvist earlier told public service radio SR, adding “therefore it is necessary to reintroduce conscription.”
According to the decision, young men and women born in 1999 and afterwards will be asked to complete recruitment questionnaires. The authorities will then choose 13,000 young people from this pool, including volunteers, who will then be called in for the enlistment process.
Ultimately, at least 4,000 young people per year will be selected to undergo basic training in 2018 and 2019.