16:19 02 Aug 2023

United to win: Czech president allows 14 citizens to fight for Ukraine

Photo: Simon Jankowski/Sipa USA | Zdroj: Reuters

Czech President Petr Pavel allowed 14 citizens to fight in Ukraine but denied 8. To legally help Ukraine with weapons, they must get approval from the Czech President first.

Radio iRozhlas writes about it.

What is the problem?

Since the first day of the Russian Federation's invasion of Ukraine in February 2022, hundreds, perhaps thousands, of foreign volunteers have gone to help the occupied country.

What is the solution?

Another 14 Czechs who want to fight against the Russian Federation together with the Ukrainian military have received permission from President Petr Pavel.

This is a necessary step for those who want to help Ukraine with weapons in their hands legally.

How does it work?

If the Czechs want to legally participate in hostilities on the side of the Ukrainian army, they must first ask the president for permission to serve in foreign armed forces.

If they go to Ukraine without a permit, they face criminal prosecution. Therefore, they can retroactively apply for cancellation.

As reported, 146 Czechs currently have the consent of the head of state to join the Ukrainians. Former President Milos Zeman gave the green light to 132 Czech citizens, and current Head of State Petr Pavel permitted another 14.

"As of today (July 29, 2023), President Petr Pavel has signed a total of 14 positive decisions on consent to the entry of Czech citizens into Ukraine's armed forces," presidential spokeswoman Markéta Řeháková told iRozhlas.cz.

iRozhlas emphasizes that it is unknown how many of them actually went to Ukraine. The number of those who left for the East without applying for benefits is also unknown. Czech Military News does not comment on the figures.

In addition, Pavel, who has been in office since March 9, rejected the requests of eight people. Markéta Řeháková refused to comment on the reasons for the negative decision.

It should be noted that the law prohibits Czechs from serving in foreign armed forces unless they belong to the North Atlantic Alliance (NATO) armed forces or do not have citizenship of the respective state.

For reference:

As Rubryka wrote, fighters from 55 countries from all continents joined the International Legion, which was created in Ukraine in connection with the aggression of the Russian Federation.

It should be noted that a Czech volunteer from the "Phoenix" project, who was helping treat soldiers on the front line in the east of Ukraine, was seriously injured in Donbas.


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