Number of contract servicemen in Russian Armed Forces to grow by 50,000 per year

The number of contract servicemen in the Russian Armed Forces will grow by several dozen thousand each year, Deputy Defense Minister Nikolai Pankov told Interfax-AVN on Wednesday.

"We will annually increase the number of contract servicemen by approximately 50,000 men. The growth will start next year," he said.

The government decided that the Russian Armed Forces would have 425,000 contract privates and sergeants by January 1, 2017. There will be 220,000 officers, too.

"So, you can count how many contract servicemen the one-million Armed Forces would have," he said.

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