Estonian unit headed to Lebanon will train for mission in Finland
An Estonian infantry platoon preparing for the UN peacekeeping mission in Lebanon headed to Finland for pre-mission training on Sunday.
The Ministry of Defence introduced a bill last week to extended Estonian participation in the UN's peacekeeping mission in Lebanon, United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL), by one year. The UNIFIL mission is also slated to be the Estonian Defence Forces' largest international mission in 2017 as well.
According to the bill, the participation of up to 50 personnel from Estonia in the Lebanon mission will be extended from Jan.1 to Dec. 31, 2017. The size of the Estonian contingent on the UNIFIL mission may be temporarily increased to 100 active service personnel for a period of no more than one month.
Estonian military have been participating in the UNIFIL mission since spring 2015. The Estonian contingent currently in Lebanon, ESTPLA-21, is made up mainly of members of the B Company of the professional Scouts Battalion and serves there as part of a Finnish-Irish battalion.
Altogether 40 countries are contributing to UNIFIL. ESTPLA-21 is the fourth rotation of Estonian infantry to participate in the UNIFIL mission.