“Compulsory military service is back, but only in a voluntary capacity. Basic-voluntary military service has proven itself. 16,000 volunteers have been trained, which is even more than we expected. This type of service is very popular. There is no need to return to compulsory military service”, said Deputy Minister of National Defence Marcin Ociepa.
“There is no such thing as a wave of quits. Every year we are quizzed about leaving the army. Every year, since the United Right Party has been in power, the number of soldiers in the Polish Army has increased”, said Marcin Ociepa when asked whether the postponement of planned pay rises for servicemen until March was to prevent them from leaving the army. As he noted, soldiers can withdraw their decisions to leave until the end of January.
The deputy head of the Ministry of National Defence also spoke about plans to increase the Polish army to 300,000 soldiers. “We can already speak of 163 thousand soldiers of different types of armed forces, different types of military service. We will also see an increase this year”, he stressed.
Tomasz Terlikowski, the host of the RMF programme, asked his guest about other types of weapons for Ukraine and when the first F-16 planes could arrive there. In response, Marcin Ociepa said that in this case, first a political decision must be made and then a military one.
“Poland is appealing to the Western world to increase aid to Ukraine. We set an example, we are the leaders of this aid, together with the United States and the United Kingdom, but we need more. It’s good that we have decisions on tanks, it’s time for more equipment”, said the deputy minister.
Asked whether Polish Mig planes are defending the Ukrainian skies, Marcin Ociepa stressed that, in his estimation, until the end of the war, one should be very cautious in providing information, as it serves no purpose other than to satisfy curiosity and could be a valuable clue for the aggressor.