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MfD: Czech military bracing for possible war, trains civilians

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Prague, Aug 29 (CTK) – The Czech military is preparing for war after many years and it will start training the calling up of civilians in October to be ready for the possible need to raise the number of soldiers several times, daily Mlada fronta Dnes (MfD) writes yesterday.
In the initial stage, the training will involve ground forces’ staffs and the checking of the administrative procedure. In April 2017, soldiers will join in, MfD writes.
The mobilisation exercise will be attended by soldiers of the 73rd tank battalion in Praslavice, north Moravia, and members of the Active Reserve, Jan Sulc, spokesman for the general staff, told MfD.
The paper writes that the Praslavice tank battalion is the sole tank unit of the Czech military. It exclusively uses upgraded Soviet-made tanks 7-72M4CZ.
The military says the “mobilisation” will not affect the public in any way and that military materiel from reserves will not be used, MfD writes.
It adds that the military will also test demobilisation, or the release of reserve soldiers from the training.
In October, the military will launch the first in a series of six-week military trainings for some 50 volunteers.
Chief-of-staff Josef Becvar said about 760 people have applied online for the October training.
The compulsory military service was abolished in the country with a population of 10.5 million more than ten years ago.
The Czech military started taking massive measures to boost its capacities last year. In addition to the prepared exchange of weapons and other equipment, it will be admitting about 2000 men and women annually, MfD writes.
It writes that the military is to have 30,000 soldiers, including the active reserves, or regularly trained voluntary units of 5000 people, by 2025.
Currently, the military has 18,700 soldiers and about 2000 active reserves.
Czech soldiers are also active in foreign missions, including in Afghanistan, Iraq, Mali and Sinai, MfD writes.
In the first half of the year, it writes, the military set aside 900 soldiers for the EU Battlegroup comprised of the Visegrad Four (V4) countries and another 250 soldiers are being prepared for the German Battlegroup.
The V4 is comprised of the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia.

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