Kyiv says passports for military-age men to be issued only in Ukraine

By Thomson Reuters Apr 24, 2024 | 1:50 PM

(Reuters) – The Ukrainian government, further tightening regulations on mobilisation, approved rules under which passports for military-age men can be issued only inside the country.

The provisions were announced on Wednesday, a day after Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba suspended consular services for military-age males until May 18 and criticised those abroad for failing to serve in the 26-month-old war against Russia.

The latest government decision stipulated that passports for foreign travel for men aged 18 to 60 could only be issued inside Ukraine.

“Such passports are not sent to a separate subdivision or a foreign diplomatic mission of Ukraine for the purpose of organising their issue,” the text read.

It said the stipulation did not apply to nationals now permitted to cross state borders while martial law is in force, including those with disabilities.

Hundreds of thousands of military-age Ukrainian men are living abroad and the country faces a shortage of troops in the campaign against Russia’s better equipped and larger military.

Ukraine adopted legislation this month overhauling how it mobilises civilian men into the armed forces.

In his comments on the suspension of consular services on Tuesday, Kuleba said it was incongruous that men subject to conscription were living abroad yet still wanted to receive state services.

“Staying abroad does not relieve a citizen of his or her duties to the homeland,” he wrote on X.

(Reporting by Ron Popeski)