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
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
"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."