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Ukraine: Parliament Raises Strength of Army to 250,000 Men

Translated Monday 9 March 2015, by Gene Zbikowski

The Ukrainian army will soon have one-third more men than today.

On March 5, the Ukrainian parliament voted a law – presented on March 2 by President Petro Poroshenko – raising the strength of the army to 250,000 men. Although the economy is a shambles and the central bank has raised its prime rate to 30% in order to counter inflation, the authorities in Kiev justified the decision by alluding to the political and military situation in eastern Ukraine, where regions are controlled by Russian-speaking insurgents. On March 5, in spite of the cease-fire, the Ukrainian army announced it had lost a man in combat. At the beginning of the week of March 1, the United States announced it is sending 300 soldiers to train the Ukrainian army. According to Moscow, they arrived on March 5. In addition, Moscow rejected Washington’s accusations that “thousands of Russian soldiers” are present in the eastern Ukraine.

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