Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the involvement of children in armed conflict: Signed (8 Feb 2002). Ratified (7 Apr 2004).
Compulsory recruitment age: 18.
Voluntary recruitment age: 17 (training only).
Duration of compulsory military service: 12 months / 3 months for university graduates.
Conscientious objection to military service recognised for conscripts: Yes, since 1991.
Duration of civilian service: 24 months.
Conscientious objection recognised for professional soldiers: No.
Military expenditure: 0.5% of GDP (data 2009).
1) The voluntary recruitment age is less than 18.
2) Military education was available to young people who were citizens of Moldova and not doing military service. Under the Law on the Status of People doing Military Service, those who entered a Military Education Institute at 17 were required to sign a military service contract at 18, which they carried out on completing their course of education at 23. Students who were expelled from a military institute for academic or disciplinary shortcomings were to be immediately conscripted, whatever their age (Article 29).
3) There is no right to conscientious objection for serving conscripts, reservists and professional soldiers.
4) The civilian service is administered by the Ministry of Defence and it has extremely punitive duration (100% longer than the military service).
1) Stop the voluntary recruitment of persons aged under 18.
2) Stop military training and abolish military schools for persons aged under 18.
3) Recognise the right to conscientious objection for serving conscripts, reservists and professional soldiers.
4) Make a genuinely civilian service (not under the Ministry of Defence) and of equal duration to the military one.
Notes: The self-proclaimed state of TRANSDNIESTR had its own laws and structures, but was not internationally recognized. According to Transdniestr’s 2005 conscription law, male residents were liable to call-up between 18 and 27 years, and those with a higher education up to the age of 30. Conscription was for 18 months, 12 for men with higher education. Professional contracts were also open to volunteers aged 18 and over, including foreigners. In time of war, soldiers were to be mobilized from the reserve. There are no legal provisions for conscientious objection and substitute service.