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Russian Officers Quit As Cutbacks Increase

Sat., March 29, 1997

Half the Russian army officers whose contracts expire in the next two years plan to resign due to poor living conditions and the declining state of the military, the Interfax news agency said Friday.

Col. Gen. Grigory Kasperovich, head of the Defense Ministry’s personnel department, said that 22 percent of the officers’ posts and 33 percent of non-commissioned officers’ jobs already were vacant, and the situation was expected to get worse, Interfax said.

Kasperovich said that 100,000 current officers don’t have proper housing, and 40 percent of the cadets were dropping out of military schools to choose other careers.

Russia’s army has been in decline since the 1991 Soviet collapse. With the economy in crisis, the armed forces have faced sharp cutbacks in funding. Top military officials regularly complain about poor conditions and low morale in the armed forces.

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