Back to list

Defense Ministry urged to be more flexible on height requirements

2012/05/05 21:32:22

Taipei, May 5 (CNA) A councilor in Taichung asked the Ministry of National Defense to review the military service regulations on height requirements to allow men under 158 cm tall to serve.

Wu Min-ji was speaking on behalf of Huang Wei-hao, a seniorfrom Chung Chou University of Science and Technology, who was rejected by the ministry when he reported for his mandatory military service because of his short stature.

Men who are shorter than 158 cm are exempt from military service.

Huang, who is two centimeters below the minimum requirement, was also not qualified for alternative service, which was a big disappointment both for him and his family.

Huang said he is generally intelligent, in good health, and wishes to serve the country.

Citing a height requirement of 142 cm in the North Korean military, Huang's parents expressed disagreement with Taiwan's relatively "high" standard.

Compared with many youths in Taiwan who try to dodge military service, Wu said he was touched by Huang's motivation and urged the ministry to give the young man a chance to be enlisted.

Taiwan, which is currently preparing to switch from conscription to an all-volunteer military force, should take examples from other countries and relax its regulations to help fulfill the wishes of those who want to serve, he said.

(By Hao Hsueh-chin and Maia Huang)