Ukraine’s Parliament Passes Bill To Crack Down on Draft Evaders

The vote comes after the parliament approved a bill to recruit prisoners

On Thursday, Ukraine’s parliament voted to crack down on draft evaders, the latest step in a slew of legislation aimed at increasing mobilization as Ukraine is facing significant manpower shortages.

The bill will significantly increase fines for Ukrainians looking to avoid being forced to fight Russian forces. The new legislation comes a day after the parliament approved a plan to allow prisoners to join the military, including murderers, as long as they haven’t killed two or more people.

Iryna Gerashchenko, a Ukrainian MP and member of the European Solidarity party, said the new bill will raise minimum fines for people trying to avoid the draft from $13 to $218. The maximum fine for people who have repeatedly violated mobilization laws will increase to $5,200. According to Reuters, the average monthly wage in Ukraine is about $560.

The bill needs to be signed by President Volodymyr Zelensky to become law. Zelensky signed a new mobilization law last month that will come into effect on May 18 and lowers the age of eligible conscripts for mobilization from 27 to 25.

Russian forces continue to advance in eastern Ukraine, and Zelensky said on Thursday that Ukrainian soldiers are facing “a really difficult situation.” The new US aid for Ukraine is not expected to help Kyiv achieve victory and will only prolong the conflict.

Author: Dave DeCamp

Dave DeCamp is the news editor of, follow him on Twitter @decampdave.