The military commissar of Moscow, Colonel Maxim Loktev, announced that the city is using a facial recognition system installed in "smart cameras" to search for conscripts who have failed to respond to their summons.
The system, which was first installed in 2021 as a cashless, cardless and phoneless system to pay for travel at 240 metro stations, is now being used as part of the city's efforts to locate conscripts who can't be served a summons as they are not living at their registered address.
The video surveillance system is being used to determine a conscript’s place of residence, in line with instructions issued by the mayor of Moscow. Additionally, organizations where conscripts work as well as educational institutions they attend are providing information to the military commissariats to help locate them.
"With the information we receive about a conscript's place of residence, it will not be difficult to notify them that they must attend the military enlistment office," Colonel Loktev is reported as saying by TASS agency.
The spring conscription campaign began in Russia on April 1, 2023, with the aim of sending 147 thousand individuals for military service.
Last week, amendments were passed in Russia to legalize the use of electronic summonses and impose prohibitions on "draft dodgers" who fail to appear at the military enlistment office, including restrictions on foreign travel and real estate transactions.
The bill is written so there will be no way to avoid a call-up. Once the enlistment notice is posted on the electronic state services portal Gosuslugi, it is considered to have been received by the individual, even if they have not read the message.
Under the law, a failure to respond to the call up will result in wide-ranging restrictions. Those served a draft notice are banned from leaving Russia with effect from the day the notice was delivered.
Additionally, any conscript who fails to respond to the summons within three weeks, will have their driver’s license suspended, be banned from applying for loans, and from selling, buying or renting property. If imposed, these restrictions would be lifted within 24 hours of reporting to the recruitment office.
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