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(May 02, 2008) On April 3, 2008, the plenary session of the Russian Federation Supreme Court reviewed the lower courts' practice in resolving cases related to draft dodging and ruled that a conscript who left the place of his military service will not be held criminally responsible if his first-time desertion was committed because of violence applied to him by his fellow soldiers or commanding officers or if he left because of extreme personal hardship, such as sickness or death of immediate relatives, which require his presence at home. The inability to receive proper medical assistance at the place of military service is considered one such circumstance that justifies the desertion. The Court specified that if a military person does not return to his post when the circumstances that required his absence are removed, e.g., there is no further need to provide care for a relative, he will be held criminally liable under existing legislation because desertion remains a crime and a criminal investigation will be initiated in each case such a crime is committed. (Ruling No. 3 of April 3, 2008, of the Russian Federation Supreme Court, Russian Federation Supreme Court official Web site, Apr. 7, 2008.)

Author: Peter Roudik More by this author
Topic: Armed forces and national security More on this topic
Jurisdiction: Russia More about this jurisdiction

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Last updated: 05/02/2008