No talk of new round of mobilisation: Kremlin

Reservists recruited during the partial mobilisation of troops in Russia's Rostov region on Oct 31. PHOTO: REUTERS

MOSCOW - The Kremlin said on Monday that it was not discussing calling up more Russian soldiers to fight in Ukraine through a second round of mobilisation.

Russia called up more than 300,000 reservists to support what it calls its “special military operation” in Ukraine in a controversial mobilisation drive launched in September.

The move prompted hundreds of thousands of Russian men to flee the country to avoid being conscripted.

It also sparked the largest anti-Kremlin protests across Russia since Moscow sent its troops to Ukraine in February.

President Vladimir Putin said he had ended the mobilisation drive at the end of October.

But he has not revoked an official decree that provides the legal basis for the draft – a decision which has caused concern among some who say the Kremlin is keeping its options open for a future round of call-ups.

Asked by reporters if Russia was planning a new round of mobilisation, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said: “I can’t speak for the Defence Ministry, but there are no discussions in the Kremlin about this.” REUTERS

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