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Air Force Headquarters

The main function of the Air Force Headquarters is to support the Estonian Air Force Commander’s decision making process.

The Air Force Headquarters are led by the Chief of Staff who is also in command when the Commander of the Air Force is absent.

The Headquarters consist of divisions and branches from A1 to A9 (A9 being civil-military cooperation) and some command group elements, e.g. Air Force Master Sergeant, Flight Safety Officer, Chief Engineer, Legal Advisor Service, Public Affairs Specialist, Air Force Chaplain and Mail and Office Support Section.

The Air Force Headquarters’ duties include the planning and harmonization of the development, manning, training, infrastructure and budgeting of the Air Force capability requirements in cooperation with the Estonian Defence Forces and the Ministry of Defence. Since the Estonian Air Force is tailor-made for cooperation with NATO, a considerable effort is made to maintain and enhance interoperability with NATO and Allied nations.

The Air Force Headquarters also select distinguished airmen for serving in NATO posts at the Heavy Airlift Wing (Papa, HUN), Combined Control and Reporting Centre at Karmelava (LTU), Combined Air Operations Centre at Uedem (GER), AIRCOM (Ramstein, GER) and at the Estonian Mission to NATO (Brussels, BEL).

The Estonian Air Force has supported and will continue to support numerous NATO and allied operations in Iraq, Afghanistan and the Icelandic air policing mission, etc. with planners and specialists, e.g. intercept controllers, forward air controllers, meteorological specialists, air traffic controllers, airfield specialists and air planners.

In crisis or wartime the Air Force HQ will adopt the 5-division structure of the Joint Force Air Component Headquarters in order to focus on situational awareness and operations. The required skill sets of the Air Force Headquarters’ airmen are kept current by frequent training and exercises in Estonia and abroad, across NATO.


Colonel Janek Lehiste

Chief of Staff

Last updated: 7. December 2023, 10:46

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