In Russia, officers' work and military service have always been especially important and for this reason the main holiday of the Armed Forces demands respect for the military's laudable mission to defend our country, the President declared at an evening ceremony on the eve of Defenders of the Fatherland Day.
It is only thanks to the selflessness, courage and heroism of Russian officers and soldiers that a very difficult and dangerous aspect of Russia's recent history has been overcome.
Without viable defence capabilities we can not solve economic or social problems, nor can we keep the country together. Therefore the state shall continue to increase efforts to assist technology modernization and to find coherent solutions to servicemen's problems. It is necessary to further improve the bases for providing the Armed Forces with personnel by increasing the number of servicemen on contract and reducing the length of conscript military service, Mr Putin emphasized.