Only 59 of 300 called to military exercises show up

Only 59 of 300 reservists called to military exercises organized by the Latvian army have shown up. However, the National Armed Forces (NBS) have no intention of punishing those who are dodging the notices, Normunds Stafeckis, a representative of the armed forces told Latvian Television's Rīta Panorāma Wednesday. 

According to Stafeckis, it was planned that only about 50-150 people will appear for the military exercises. 

"The 59 who showed up are now undergoing intensive training. The responsible institutions are looking into the situation to understand whether the reasons for [others'] non-attendance are substantive. We have no intention to punish [anyone], even though the agreement stipulates it," he said.

From the 300 notice letters sent, he added, 89 were returned, meaning that the reservists didn't receive them. From that follows the fact that the army's data is no longer current.

"There were other objective reasons. Someone is in poor health, someone is looking after their children. Very many of the reservists live abroad, though it didn't hinder ten people return from abroad to attend the exercises," said Stafeckis.

Earlier the NBS had announced that for this year's exercises the Mobilization law would be used so attendance would no longer be voluntary. 

The reserve consists of people retired from regular service but not removed from the military records, along with people who have done their service at the Latvian National Guard if they are still at conscription age.

The NBS is planning to train 2,000 reservists by 2018.

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