03:22 GMT +324 May 2018
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    Mountain infantry soldiers stand in front of a troops transporter Boxer after an exercise of the mountain infantry brigade 23 of the German Bundeswehr near the Bavarian village Bad Reichenhall, southern Germany, on March 23, 2016

    German Defense Minister Mulls Major Army Shift From Massive Overseas Ops

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    A new military concept provides that the German army should pay more attention to national problems which had been previously abandoned due to the army's strong focus on missions abroad.

    German Defense Minister Ursula von der Leyen is mulling a complete reorganization of the country's army, which will include a stronger focus on domestic issues, Süddeutsche Zeitung reported, citing a new policy paper "Concepts for the Bundeswehr."

    The document provides that Bundeswehr should equally be engaged on the international and domestic levels.

    The move comes as a major shift away from the previous policy when for over ten years a major part of the German military's efforts had been focused on overseas military operations in conflict-torn regions.

    The reorganization also provides for increased military spending that is supposed to be used to update military structures and equipment.

    READ MORE: Global Military Spending Higher Than During Cold War — German MP

    Earlier, the German newspaper Handelsblatt had reported that the Bundeswehr intends to spend more than €450 million on the modernization of its armed forces in 2018 alone.

    The move comes amid reports that the German army has been suffering from equipment and staff shortages.

    For instance, on March 31, 2018, news emerged of a confidential report from the German Defense Ministry warning of the poor and "outdated" state of the Air Force's fleet of Tornado combat jets. The aircraft were said to be incapable of joining further NATO missions as they do not possess an encrypted communications system and the intelligence they gather remains vulnerable to interception.

    READ MORE: Germany Plans to Spend €450 Million for Army Modernization — Drop in the Ocean?

    Previously, another German magazine had reported that over half of the German Bundeswehr's Leopard 2 tanks weren't ready for operation. It was said that the Bundeswehr has 244 tanks of this type in service, but only 95 of them are in full combat readiness.


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    military operation, reform, army, Bundeswehr, Germany
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