Estcoy-16 Gives SitRep Halfway Through Tour of Duty ({{commentsTotal}})

Source: Photo: Postimees/Scanpix

Estcoy-16, the Estonian infantry company currently stationed in Afghanistan, has taken stock of its first three months in country, a period in which it carried out nine major operations.

The troops have discovered IED parts, arms and ammunition, and also disrupted insurgent activity, said the Defense Forces. 

Besides searching suspicious houses, the company is in charge of communicating with locals, the Defense Forces general staff said in a statement.

"Disrupting insurgent activity and curtailing their freedom of movement has allowed Afghanistan security forces to operate more successfully," said Maj. Meelis Loik, commander of Estcoy-16.

Lt. Col. Arno Kruusmann, commander of the entire Estonian contingent, which includes Estcoy-16, says the company is being used in the Helmand area of responsibility in places where local forces are not enough, but, in general, local capability continues to improve ahead of the international security forces' withdrawal in 2014.  

The longest of the missions conducted by Estcoy-16 since it was first deployed in combat operations on May 14 has been a four-day assignment.

The soldiers have searched a total of 344 compounds and found 32 caches of IED parts, munitions and arms, said the Defense Forces.

The company, the second to last to serve in Afghanistan, was deployed on May 4 and is based in Camp Bastion.