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Ukrainian Prez proposes to increase armed forces

Ukraine,Politics

Author : Indo Asian News Service

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Kiev, May 27 (IANS) Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has initiated an urgent bill to Parliament to increase the number of troops in the armed forces by 11,000, authorities said.

The bill aimed to "ensure the functioning of a separate branch of the Armed Forces of Ukraine - the Territorial Defense Forces, as well as the further development of the resistance system", Xinhua news agency quoted Parliament statement citing an explanatory note to the bill, as sayin.

Zelensky proposed boosting the number of armed forces members to 261,000 people, including 215,000 servicemen.

Currently, the country's armed forces do not exceed 250,000, including 204,000 servicemen.

The explanatory note also underlined the move in the context of the ongoing armed conflict in eastern Ukraine's Donbas region comprising Donetsk and Luhansk.

Parts of Donetsk and Luhansk regions along the Russian border have been controlled by rebels supported by Moscow for nearly seven years.

According to UN estimates, more than 13,000 people have been killed in fighting since 2014, while as many as 40,000 others have been wounded.

Despite the imposition of the latest ceasefire in 2015, around 50 people have been killed since the beginning of this year alone.

Kiev has repeatedly blamed Moscow for inciting the conflict.

Russia, however, has denied the charges, saying the accusations are groundless.

--IANS

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