President Kersti Kaljulaid told reservists participating in the military snap exercise “Okas” this weekend that 88% turnout with just 24 hours’ notice was a remarkably good result.
“Our defense capability relies on reservists, who must be able to act as a unit. It is remarkable that 88% of the reserve units could be mobilized at just 24 hours’ notice,” Kaljulaid said. “That is an excellent result, for which reservists, as well as their families and all Estonian people, deserve praise.”
Estonians couldn’t choose the time or the world in which they lived, but the choice of attitude was theirs, the president said. “The most important key to Estonia’s security lies in our people, the free, self-confident, like-minded, and cooperating Estonian people,” Kaljulaid said. “If you know who stands by your side, it doesn’t matter who you face. The ongoing extra training event, as well as other exercises of the Defence Forces and Kaitseliit taking place at the same time, confirm that our deterrence is real, and not illusory. We have real units, not an army on paper.”
The Estonian Defence Forces (EDF) mobilized more than 300 members of the 433rd infantry company of the Võru district of the Kaitseliit volunteer corps, as well as reservists of the headquarters company who finished their conscript service in 2014, for an extraordinary reservist training event running from Dec. 2 to 5. The National Defense Act that took effect this year allows the EDF to summon reservists with just 24 hours’ notice. This is the first time the provision was implemented.
Kaljulaid also visited the Kaitseliit exercise Põhjatäht (North Star) in the Tallinn airport area, which focused on a situation where the volunteer corps has to promptly respond to the airport and the Police and Border Guard Board’s request for assistance to ensure the security of the facility, and defend it against a potential enemy.
Editor: Editor: Dario Cavegn