Reservist Day in Ukraine Date in the current year: May 18, 2024

Reservist Day in Ukraine Reservist Day is an official holiday in the Ukrainian military. Celebrated on May 18, it was established in April 2019 by President Petro Poroshenko. The observance was created to honor the country’s military reserve force.

A military reserve force of a country comprises its citizens who combine a military career or role with a civilian career. They are not part of the country’s armed forces and are not normally kept in a state of military readiness (under arms); the main role of reservists is to be available to fight should the need in additional manpower arise (for example, in case of an invasion or a total war). Thanks to reserve forces, nations can reduce their peacetime military expenditures while having enough manpower prepared to war.

In some countries (for example, the UK, the United States, Canada and Spain) the reserve forces are composed of civilians who dedicate a certain amount of time (typically one weekend a month) to training in order to maintain military skills, either as members of standing reserve regiments or as individuals. In some cases, a military reserve force can include a state guard, home guard, or militia. This is the case with the United States National Guard and Home Guards in Scandinavian countries (Norway, Sweden and Denmark).

There are countries where service in the military reserved forces is compulsory for personnel who have completed their regular service. They include Finland, Sweden, Colombia, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, and Israel. In Israel, for example, all citizens under certain age (40 for soldiers, 45 for officers, 49 for personnel who perform certain specific duties) are eligible for reserve duty and can be called up for 45 days every year for training.

The Armed Forces of Ukraine also have a military reserve force. The importance of reservists for the Ukrainian army has increased manifold since the outbreak of the War in Donbass in the western part of the country. Although conscripted and professional military personnel generally meet the needs of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, a strong reserve force is necessary in case of unforeseen situations.

According to estimates as of late 2018, the military reserve force of the Ukrainian armed forces numbered about 200,000, which was enough to form combat-ready units, and the potential number of recruits who could be drafted in the event of a full-scale war ranged from 1.5 to 2 million. Ukraine’s military reserve force includes over 170,000 experienced and combat-ready servicemen who have already participated in hostilities and undergo regular training at special camps.

Reservist Day in Ukraine was established to emphasize the important role of reservists in protecting the independence and territorial integrity of the country, as well as to thank them for their readiness to join the ranks of the armed forces and other legitimate military formations at any time should the need arise. The main task of the holiday is to boost the further development of modern military traditions of independent Ukraine and the patriotic spirit in the country.

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Reservist Day in Ukraine, holidays in Ukraine, official holidays, professional holidays, military holidays