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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Military to visit Israel in 2021 to learn about its reserve system

ROC Central News Agency

12/02/2020 04:20 PM

Taipei, Dec. 2 (CNA) Taiwan's military will send a delegation to Israel next year to learn about that country's reserve force system as it prepares to overhaul its own reserve forces, a senior defense official said Wednesday.

Han Gan-ming (韓岡明), chief of the Defense Ministry's All-out Defense Mobilization Office, said the nation's armed forces will launch a full-scale reform of its reserve forces starting in 2022 and the trip to Israel will be part of its preparations.

"We want to learn from Israel's experience as a reference for our future reforms," Han told lawmakers during a legislative hearing.

According to the ministry, the three-man-delegation that will visit Israel sometime between July and September 2021 will focus on the Israeli reservists' call-up system, training programs and compensation.

Israel was chosen because its conscription system is similar to Taiwan's and all Israeli citizens are subject to conscription regardless of gender, Han said.

The ministry made similar trips to Israel and Sweden in 2016.

Defense Minister Yen De-fa (嚴德發) announced earlier this year that the military is taking measures to make reserve forces a more reliable backup for regular forces in protecting the country amid increased military maneuvers around the island by China.

These measures include increasing the frequency and duration of each call-up as well as providing better equipment and scaling up the training for reservists, Yen said.

At present, reservists are called up every two years for training at a military base near their residence to maintain their basic combat skills. They can be called up no more than twice within eight years after being discharged from their military service.

(By Matt Yu and Joseph Yeh)

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