More than enough patriotic Russians have enlisted in the military, the president said
File photo: A military enlistment office in Tambov, Russia, July 9, 2023 © Sputnik/Alexey Sukhorukov
With 300,000 Russians signing military contracts just this year, Moscow has no need for foreign fighters, President Vladimir Putin said on Friday.
As media speculated on mercenary recruitment he told reporters in Sochi, after meeting with President Alexander Lukashenko of Belarus, that “this is total nonsense.” Russia “has no such need to invite people from abroad for combat operations,” he added.
The Russian president was addressing a question about speculation in the West that North Korea might have pledged to send soldiers when Putin met with Kim Jong-un earlier this week.
Putin reminded journalists of the 270,000 voluntary enlistments so far this year, then noted that this number was already obsolete.
“As of this morning, there are 300,000 contracts,” he said, praising the “highest patriotic considerations” that motivated Russians to volunteer for military service. The soldiers were also equipped with “state-of-the-art weapons and hardware,” he added.