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The Ukrainian military has seen an increase in the number of women who have volunteered to join its ranks in the midst of its deadly war against Russia.

About 1,000 women have volunteered to fight since the war broke out in February, Ukrainian Deputy Defense Minister Hanna Malyar said this week, according to a Defense Ministry report.

“Since February 24 we have mobilized about 1,000 women – these are the ones who came voluntarily and declared their desire to be mobilized,” she said.

LVIV, UKRAINE – MARCH 24: Ukrainian female soldiers are seen before heading to the front line as displaced Ukrainian civilians continue to swarm around the train station to flee due to ongoing Russian attacks, in Lviv, Ukraine on 24 March 2022.
(Photo by Metin Aktas / Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

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Ahead of the invasion of Russia, Ukrainian lawmakers revised an existing law that could require women between the ages of 18 and 60 to be “eligible for military service” and have worked in certain professions to fight in the Ukrainian army during a time of war.

Conscription for women in the ranks has been expanded to include a large number of qualifying professions for compulsory registration, including librarians, journalists, musicians, and psychologists, among others.

Women’s conscription in Ukraine is nothing new, and women have served in the Ukrainian army since 1993 after Kiev’s independence from the Soviet Union in 1991.

Not all female conscripts will see the front line as many have traditionally helped with logistical support. Although in 2014, when Russia first invaded the Donbas region, 257 women received awards for their combat service, nine of which were awarded posthumously, according to the defense organization Security Women.

Ukrainian female soldiers are seen before heading to the front line as displaced Ukrainian civilians continue to swarm around the train station to flee the ongoing Russian attacks, in Lviv, Ukraine on March 24, 2022.

Ukrainian female soldiers are seen before heading to the front line as displaced Ukrainian civilians continue to swarm around the train station to flee the ongoing Russian attacks, in Lviv, Ukraine on March 24, 2022.
(Metin Aktas Agency / Anadolu via Getty Images)

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Despite her ability to enlist women for military service during the war, Malyar said no women have been forcibly mobilized since 2014.

Even as Russia continues its assault on Ukraine, the Deputy Defense Minister said there are no plans to further expand the law to include additional groups of conscripted women.

On the morning of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy asked all men between the ages of 18 and 60 to stay in Ukraine and be prepared to join his fighting force.

“Our military needs this support. The main thing is that they need the support of our population,” he said. “We have an army of powerful people. Our people are also a powerful army.”

When the war began, Ukraine had about 196,600 active military personnel along with another 900,000 reservists, according to the International Institute of Strategic Studies.

Ukrainian military personnel take part in a rehearsal of the parade in central Kiev on August 20, 2018, ahead of Ukraine's Independence Day celebrations on August 24.

Ukrainian military personnel take part in a rehearsal of the parade in central Kiev on August 20, 2018, ahead of Ukraine’s Independence Day celebrations on August 24.
(SERGEI SUPINSKY / AFP via Getty Images)

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In 2020, women made up nearly 16% of the Ukrainian army, but this percentage was likely altered by the number of reservists called up in the war against Russia.

It is unclear how large Ukraine’s fighting force has become with the inclusion of its male conscripts and other female volunteers.

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