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Ombudsman: Russia to introduce military training courses for students in occupied Crimea

by Olena Goncharova and The Kyiv Independent news desk September 2, 2023 7:27 AM 1 min read
Pupils enter the school during a ceremony to mark the start of the new school year, known as Knowledge Day in Irpin, northwest of Kyiv, on Sept. 1, 2023, amid the Russian invasion of Ukraine. (ROMAN PILIPEY/AFP via Getty Images)
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Starting Sept. 1, Crimean students from grade five to nine will attend extracurricular activities called "Foundations of Military Training," Ukraine's Ombudsman Dmytro Lubinets reported on his Telegram.

To implement this, he said, at least 25 Crimean teachers have already undergone courses in military discipline, tactical medicine, assembling and disassembling firearms, organizing field camps, handling individual protective gear, as well as radiological, chemical, and biological protection.

At the same time, 10th-grade students will receive education in the "fundamentals of military readiness." This comprehensive curriculum will encompass not only practical drills and instruction in essential military skills but will also feature lectures on the "career opportunities" associated with military service, as outlined in official textbooks and teacher's guides available online.

Earlier this year, Russia's Education Ministry also introduced updated history textbooks that include segments about the war in Ukraine that Russia calls a “special military operation,” the annexation of Crimea, and Western sanctions, CNN reported on Aug. 9.

The recently published textbooks incorporate maps depicting occupied Ukrainian areas as Russian territories, endorsing Russian officials' narrative that Ukrainians and Russians are "one people." Ukraine is also portrayed in the textbooks as an "ultranationalist state" where all things Russian are regarded hostile and persecuted.

As second academic year begins in wartime Ukraine, millions unable to go back to school full time
Russia’s ongoing war against Ukraine prevents over two million Ukrainian students from attending school as normal, with only a third of school-age children returning full time to school on Sept. 1.
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