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Baltic Generals met with their eFP Counterparts in Tallinn

On November 30, 2023 Commanders of Estonian, Latvian and Lithuanian Land Forces components and Commanders and representatives of the three NATO enhanced Forward Presence Battlegroups Framework Nations, Germany, United Kingdom and Canada met in Tallinn.

Estonia and HQ CABRIT, the UK-led Headquarters in Tallinn which oversees all UK eFP deployments were working together to deliver this conference, following the German-Lithuanian hosting in May 2023 in Lithuania.

“We have discussed the current enhanced presence and integration into the NATO chain of command solution models of the three very close, yet quite different host countries, and our Allies presented their the views of in order to have a comparison possibility. We are grateful to our strategic allies – Great Britain, France and the United States – for their support in building a division with broader fighting capabilities,” said Estonian Division Commander Veiko-Vello Palm.

Latvia was represented by Zemessardze commander Brigadier General Egils Leščinskis, Lithuania by Brigadier General Arturas Radvilas, Commander of the Ground Forces, Brigadier General Giles Harris of the United Kingdom and Lieutenant Colonel Patrick Ponzoni, representative of the French contingent in Estonia, Canada by Colonel Vincent Kirsten, Germany by Colonel Arno Josef Schöberl and Estonia by Division Commander Major General Veiko-Vello Palm. Brigadier General Jean-Francois Cauden of the Canadian Armed Forces , Deputy Commander Manoeuvre Multinational Division North  took part in the meeting as well.

„I was very pleased to host, together with Major General Palm, my counterparts from Canada and Germany and their Host Nation commanders from Latvia and Lithuania. We discussed our varied approaches and common challenges, as we implement deterrence and defence of NATO’s Eastern Flank here. Regional cooperation is essential for the effective delivery of our operational plans, especially regarding logistics, which is a key focus for our discussions.“ said Brigadier General Giles Harris, National Commander of UK Land forces in Estonia and the Baltics.

Discussions on  the training of troops, planning, equipment and logistics needs and infrastructure development were held during the course of the conference. The opportunities for presence of the contributing framework nations as well as the readiness, needs and proposals of the host countries were compared.

Estonia has created an Estonian Division in December 2022, the development and integration of which into the NATO chain of command has been intensively dealt with. The division led Exercise Spring Storm 2023, is currently taking part in  the US Divisional Training Program Warfighter, and recently completed the Decisive Lancer 2023 command post exercise (CPX), one of the goals of which was to engage territorial defence units with the division and allied units. Estonia has invested and will continue to invest in the possibilities for the Allies to be located in Estonia, including the training ground in Southern Estonia, as well as the development of the infrastructure of the bases of Tapa and Ämari. Investments in the ammunition storage are planned as well.

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