The inhabitants will probably get another opportunity to get involved in the defense of the Czech Republic

The inhabitants will probably get another opportunity to get involved in the defense of the Czech Republic

Residents will probably get a chance to join the defense of the Czech Republic

Illustrative photo – Ceremonial military oath of 470 graduates of the basic training course, December 13, 2022, Brno.

Prague – Residents will probably get another opportunity to get involved in the defense of the Czech Republic. It will be introduced by the government's amendment to the military legislation, which was supported by the House of Representatives in the initial round. MPs from the ANO opposition movement blocked the cabinet's request for its approval in the first reading. Like the SPD, it wants a wider debate and to submit amendments. The bill also regulates, for example, the remuneration of soldiers in active reserve and will allow the Ministry of Defense to use data from public administration information systems for defense planning even outside of a state of national threat or a state of war. The deputies of the defense committee will now deal with the proposed changes within the standard two-month period. The coalition did not push for its halving.

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Currently, people can become a professional soldier, join the active reserve or volunteer to participate in a military exercise. The draft adds the so-called voluntary predetermination for the replenishment of the armed forces to these possibilities of involvement in the defense of the state. A person who would apply for them would have to immediately undergo a medical examination. However, if the security situation worsened, he would have to undergo training. The cabinet would establish the obligation through government measures, the House of Representatives could cancel them.

Radim Fiala, chairman of the deputies of the SPD movement, was the most critical of the proposed changes, according to whom the military legislation is being amended “for the purpose of involving the citizens of the Czech Republic in the war conflict”. He paused over the fact that in connection with voluntary predestination, the law does not talk about the defense of the Czech Republic. “There is a big risk that this institute, but not only it, could be used to send Czech citizens abroad, for example to the battlefield in Ukraine,” Fiala declared. Coalition MPs objected to the claim that the government wants to drag the Czechia into war. “You are really scaring a large part of the population and at the same time you say that you are reacting to scared people,” said Jiří Horák (KDU-ČSL).

ANO Member of Parliament Michal Ratiborský stated that the movement is in favor of increasing military training, but the amendment would, according to him, have serious effects on the population. He recalled the ANO proposal, according to which the state supported associations preparing citizens for the defense of the state. Josef Bělica (ANO), on the other hand, dwelled on the fact that the military authorities will now be able to inform every citizen about the emergence of conscription, which everyone from 18 to 60 years of age is subject to. Radovan Vích (SPD) called the abolition of basic military service in 2004 a mistake. No one wants to re-introduce it, but the people who still completed it are now 37 or older, and it is necessary to respond to this situation in some way, he noted.< /p>

The amendment allows the state to pay an annual recruitment allowance of 24,000 crowns to new soldiers in the active reserve and also introduces a stabilization allowance of the same amount for them. The draft does not change the current regular annual remuneration of 18,000 crowns, but it will be conditional on longer, at least two weeks, active service. Currently, at least one weekly military exercise per year is sufficient. A soldier in active reserve will be able to receive an additional up to 6,000 crowns depending on the result of the service evaluation. According to the amendment, other reserve soldiers who participated in military exercises voluntarily or on the basis of a government measure will be entitled to a reward of 15,000 crowns. with the aim of providing them with priority passage by rail. It will allow the use of military weapons and other means, such as signal jammers, net throwers and lasers, to prevent drones from flying over designated areas. At the government office, the amendment enacts the position of adviser for national security, which Tomáš Pojar is now, including as secretary of the State Security Council.