Call for call-up in Germany

Call for call-up in Germany

BORIS PISTORIUS: Germany’s Defence Minister reviews troops in 2023 Photo credit: CC/Dr Frank Gaeth

Germany’s Christian Democratic Union (CDU) principal opposition party, voted to add military service to its programme.

Should it return to power, the party would do its best to bring in a law obliging young people either to serve one year in the armed forces or in the community.

The CDU’s willingness to reintroduce a system that ended in 2011 is based on unease regarding Russia, together with diminishing numbers in Germany’s armed forces.  There are currently 181,383 soldiers, a long way short of the 203,000 target set for 2025.

Nor is the call-up plan limited to the CDU.

Minister of Defence Boris Pistorius, who belongs to the governing centre-left Social Democrats (SPD), announced that he will reach a decision based on some kind of military service this summer.

Pistorius has already shown a preference for the Swedish call-up system which he described as “particularly suited” to Germany’s needs.

Sweden axed compulsory military service in 2010 but brought it back in 2017, prompted in great part by Russia’s annexation of the Crimea in 2014.

All of Sweden’s young people must report for an assessment on reaching 18, after which some are recalled for a medical checkup, with between 5 and 10 per cent eventually taking up military service, which is voluntary. Sweden also reinstated compulsory community service in late 2023.

“Whether something like this could also be conceivable here is part of our considerations,” Pistorius said.

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Written by

Linda Hall

Originally from the UK, Linda is based in Valenca and is a reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering local news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at