The Estonian officers serving on the United Nations Interim Force (UNIFIL) in Lebanon returned from the Blue Line separating Israel and Lebanon to their main base UNP 2-45 in southern Lebanon on Sunday.
The Estonian Defence Forces’ ESTPLA-22 infantry platoon began its service on the Blue Line on Jan. 15, where it conducted regular motorized and foot patrols, constantly monitoring the demarcation line between conflict sides, and guarding the safety of the UNP 6-50 base. The duties of the Estonian contingent were taken over for the next two months by a Finnish infantry platoon, military spokespeople in Tallinn said.
“All members of the platoon were satisfied with the time spent at UNP 6-50, but are also looking forward to a change of the last couple of months’ routine, as we were there on our own and maintaining the base required a bigger individual contribution from everyone,” ESTPLA-22 commander Lt. Virko Luide said.
Beginning this week, the Estonian peacekeepers will continue to conduct day and night patrols out of UNP 2-45, the main base of the joint Irish-Finnish Battalion to which ESTPLA-22 is assigned. Manning UNIFIL’s smaller field camps is part of the peacekeepers’ regular service.
Staff officers included, some 40 Estonian military personnel are currently serving on UNIFIL. ESTPLA-22, which mainly consists of troops from the EDF’s Scouts Battalion, is the fifth rotation of Estonian troops in Lebanon.
Editor: Dario Cavegn