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Chinese military no longer rejects tattooed and overweight applicants

November 2, 2011

The Chinese military has updated its recruitment policy to accommodate the changing youth culture. The Defense Ministry announced the changes to the People's Liberation Army on Wednesday, just in time for the winter recruitment drive, according to The Associated Press.

Until now, having any visible tattoos on the face or neck immediately disqualified army hopefuls, but the new guidelines allow body ink as long as the visible part is less that 3/4 of an inch in length. The addendum also allows people with ear piercings to sign up, as long as the holes aren't too noticeable. Those with body weights that are up to 25 percent more and 15 percent less than military standards, which is 5 percent more wiggle-room in each direction, will also be welcome to enlist, according to the news source.

The strict recruitment regulations have warranted about a 70 percent rejection rate of applicants in the past, and the People's Liberation Army has the largest standing army in the world with about 2.3 million soldiers and officers.

One of the hardest parts of enlistment for many soldiers can be spending so much time away from loved ones, but they can use international calling cards to make calls to China to stay in touch with their friends and families while they are serving their country.

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