Conscription letter is rejected by 200,000 17-year-olds: ‘If war threatens, a call will follow’

Conscription letter is rejected by 200,000 17-year-olds: ‘If war threatens, a call will follow’
Conscription letter is rejected by 200,000 17-year-olds: ‘If war threatens, a call will follow’
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In principle, the people who receive the letter do not have to do anything. Compulsory attendance has been suspended since May 1, 1997. This means that conscripts are no longer called up, but the government and parliament can decide to do so in exceptional situations, for example if there is a threat of war. Then people are tested first. If they are found suitable, they are called up for military service.

Members of the royal family also receive the conscription letter, this year Princess Ariane. People who are younger than 35 and who are newly or re-registered as Dutch citizens will also receive the military service letter on their doorstep.

Also for women

Since 2019, the conscription letter has also been delivered to young women. The Senate adopted the bill for this in that year. The law was mainly symbolic. It meant that the law no longer distinguished between men and women when it came to defending the homeland.

Outgoing Defense Minister Kajsa Ollongren draws attention to the so-called service year for the first time in the annual letter. This is a voluntary year in which young people who want to and are suitable can work for Defense for a year, with a salary. This could be after high school, after further education or, for example, when people take a sabbatical from work.

In the video below we speak to young people who chose such a service year last year:

In view of the current Russian threat, new options are being explored to recruit young people for the ministry year.

Mandatory survey

Such as a mandatory survey for 17-year-olds about participation in the armed forces. Participating in the ministry year is not mandatory, but the survey does make young people think about their contribution.

This method is derived from the Swedish model, in which such a mandatory survey is already used. The purpose behind this is to force young people to think about the choice of possibly joining Defense. In Sweden, young people who do not complete and return the form are fined.

The first year of service started in September last year, with 221 people participating. The number should grow to 1,000 next year, Defense reports. The organization needs many new employees, around 5,000 annually, says a spokesperson.

The article is in Dutch

Netherlands

Tags: Conscription letter rejected #17yearolds war threatens call follow

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