Updated: 24-Jul-2002 Week of 1-7 July 2002

2 July 2002

Assisting discharged military personnel in Russia

A joint NATO-Russia centre for helping discharged Russian military personnel return to civilian life was officially opened in Moscow on 2 July. The NATO-funded centre will provide personnel leaving the military with information on training and employment opportunities and their rights and privileges.

Located at the Moscow State University of Economics, Statistics and Informatics, the centre runs a web site which addresses the practical problems faced by discharged military personnel: where to learn new skills, how to find housing and what employment opportunities are available. The centre will also train 100 instructors who will work throughout the Russian Federation and advise discharged military personnel on their rights, entitlements and prospects for the future.

"It is an example of how we are moving from talk to concrete action in our co-operation with the Russian Federation," said Rolf Welberts, director of the NATO information office in Moscow, pointing out that the project is a direct NATO contribution to the military reform process in the Russian Federation.

The Russian Federation is currently in the process of restructuring its armed forces, part of which involves reducing the number of troops.

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