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The Compulsory Border Guard Service (German: Grenzschutzdienstpflicht) was enacted by the German parliament in the Federal Border Protection Act of 18 August 1972, based on Article 12a of the German Constitution. The remaining provisions of the Federal Border Protection Act were repealed in 1994. However, the compulsory border guard service has not been enforced since 1973. Anyone who serves or served in the Federal Border Guard (German: Bundesgrenzschutz (BGS)) can no longer be assigned to the military service (§ 42a Conscription Law) in the German Federal Armed Forces (German: Bundeswehr). In 2005 the border guard service has been renamed to Federal Police (German: Bundespolizei), so the mandatory service has to be achieved there.
The implementation of the cumpulsory border guard service has to be seen in a historical context. Until the 1980s the BGS was organized as a paramilitary force for national deployment, both at the inner-German border or in case of civil disorder, because this was prohibited for the Bundeswehr in principle. The BGS was featured with heavy military equipment and the officers were officially combatants until 1994. After the "German Emergency Acts" (German: Notstandsgesetze) have been enacted in 1968, the tasks of the BGS changed. The military task was reduced, because in a State of Defence (German: Verteidigungsfall or V-Fall) the Bundeswehr since then is entitled under restrictive circumstances to be deployed in interior events. Nevertheless, the BGS was equipped with light and medium infantry weapons until the mid-eighties and still maintains armoured personnel carriers like Sonderwagen 4 or Mowag Eagle.
Draft of Border Guards
Men, at the age of eighteen or older and if they were retired members of the Federal Police or they did not serve in the military or federal police yet, can be drafted to the border guard service. The mandatory service can be introduced, if there are not enough volunteers joining the federal police. If the demand is covert with volunteers again, the service ends at the same time for the already drafted persons. The employment status of the draftees is similar to the status during the military service. The service is divided into border protection basic service, border protection exercises and perpetual border protection service in case of defense and in the cases mentioned in article 91 of the constitution. Retired members belong to the border guard reserve.
Current enforcement of the draft
Although the compulsory border guard service remains in the law, but since 1994 it needs to be put into effect by a resolution of the parliament, similar to the suspended conscription for the military service in 2011.
- "§ 50 BGSG, Beginn und Ende der Grenzschutzdienstpflicht".
- "BGSG - nichtamtliches Inhaltsverzeichnis".
- Verheyen, Josef (2013-11-11). Rechtskunde — leicht verständlich. ISBN 9783663130871.
- Parma, David (2016). "Einführung der Grenzschutzdienstpflicht". Installation und Konsolidierung des Bundesgrenzschutzes 1949 bis 1972. pp. 348–376. doi:10.1007/978-3-658-10928-8_9. ISBN 978-3-658-10927-1.