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August 7, 2017 1:38 pm

First-Ever Volunteers From Thailand and Honduras Among Newest Batch of IDF Foreign Recruits

avatar by Barney Breen-Portnoy

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IDF soldiers during basic training. Photo: IDF via Wikimedia Commons.

This summer, 153 foreign volunteers from 12 different countries are enlisting in the IDF, according to data published on Sunday by the Israeli Defense Ministry.

The group of new recruits — 122 males and 31 females — features the first-ever volunteers from Thailand and Honduras, the ministry said.

The leading source of soldiers from abroad in the current July-August draft cycle is the United States (68), with France coming in second (58). Other countries on the list include Britain, South Africa, Belgium, Mexico, Australia, Canada and Austria.

18-year-old Bangkok native Marisa Avram — the daughter of an Israeli father and a Thai mother who converted to Judaism — told the Hebrew news site nrg, “I think that serving in the IDF will be an amazing experience for me, and I’d be very happy to serve in a combat role.”

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Aliyah and Immigration Minister Sofa Landver wished the volunteers a “pleasant and challenging service.”

“I’m sure you will [serve] with the same motivation that pushed you to come here,” she said.

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