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British led NATO Battlegroup remains ready

Soldiers from the Royal Welsh Regiment practice anti tank warfare drills in Estonia during Exercise Furious Oak in December 2017

TAPA, Estonia – While many spend the winter enjoying the holidays with family and friends, the British and Estonian forces assigned to NATO Enhanced Forward Presence Battlegroup-Estonia continue to train and enhance their readiness for the cold months to come.
The British armoured brigade personnel have recent experience in extreme cold weather, having served in Canada, the Balkans and Norway. Their knowledge, combined with assistance from Royal Marine training teams, ensure the battlegroup remains fully operational regardless of weather conditions.

"Since arriving just over two months ago the Battlegroup has already conducted snap alert deployment, and command and control exercises with our Estonian partners," said Lieutenant Colonel Owain Luke, the eFP Battlegroup-Estonia commander.  "In addition battle group personnel have undertaken low level and formation training in cold weather conditions." 
NATO's enhanced forward presence in Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland provides a powerful deterrence and allows some unique training opportunities. Through a series of rigorous exercises alongside the host and partner nations each battlegroup enhances their capabilities.

"The addition of a very well equipped and highly professional British battle group in my Brigade adds significant value to our ability to defend NATO territory, and also provides some excellent opportunities to learn from each other," said Brigadier General Indrek Sirrel, the Deputy Chief of Defence Estonian Defence Forces. "Our capability and defensive posture is maintained 365 days a year and we remain alert and vigilant. Our defences are strong and we ready and prepared for all eventualities."

In 2018 each enhanced forward presence battlegroup will undergo a series of exercises to further test capability and readiness. For the Servicemembers in Estonia Exercise Siil will be a critical training opportunity, testing the battlegroup as a whole.

"I am extremely satisfied with how the BG has performed so far, and with our combat readiness and preparations," said Luke. "Along with the Estonian Brigade that we are proud to be part of, our defensive capability, our readiness and alertness is first class and we are looking forward to further testing exercises in 2018."

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