Germany has announced the closure of 31 of its military bases. The government said it was planning on downsizing the army with numerous sites to be shut by 2017. 381 military bases will be scale backed with troops being cut from 250,000 to 185,000. Berlin aims to maintain a force of 170,000 in the future with 10,000 soldiers available for permanent duty abroad. 5,000 to 15,000 volunteers will also be recruited under the new plan.
The move indicates a major change in the country’s defensive strategy. Defense minister Thomas de Maiziere is expected to give a briefing on the developments.