Almost 1,500 new Defence Force members to be recruited by next year

The campaigns are aiming to keep the permanent Defence Forces at 9,500 personnel

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Image: Flickr/Irish Defence Forces

The acting Defence Minister Simon Coveney has announced a new recruitment campaign for the Defence Forces.

It will see 1,450 personnel enlisted by next year - 600 general service personnel in 2016 and a further 850 in 2017.

Mr Coveney says the new positions will "enable us to rejuvenate our Defence Forces with the induction of young, enthusiastic and committed men and women".

He adds that the government is committed to maintaining the permanent Defence Forces at 9,500 personnel.

The campaign will specifically target increased female recruitment using social media channels, digital advertisements and the introduction information programmes for women.

Currently just over 6% of Defence Forces personnel are women.

It is also proposed to continue with outreach initiatives, which seeks to engage with minority communities and new citizens.

These measures include a Defence Forces presence at citizenship days and direct contact with community groups to raise awareness and highlight career opportunities.

Applicants will have to complete physical fitness and interview assessments.

The recruitment competitions will be run through a centralised online application system on the Defence Forces website.