Defence Minister: Snap exercise a complete success
The reserve units mobilized for a snap exercise on Friday were by now fully manned and combat-ready, which proved yet again that Estonia’s reserve forces system functioned well, Minister of Defence Margus Tsahkna (IRL) said on Saturday.
Tsahkna said that according to the report he had received on Saturday morning, all units mobilized for the snap exercise were manned to the prescribed extent, and had achieved combat readiness, with 88% of participants present.
“I can confirm that Estonia’s national defense chain of command, from the Government of the Republic right down to reservists, functions effectively. The ongoing training event is a success story for the defense forces,” the minister said.
A realistic and working reserve forces system relied on motivated reservists, Tsahkna observed, and thanked all service members and Kaitseliit volunteers ready to make a contribution to national defense despite the short notice. “It is reservists’ awareness and motivation to be ready to defend Estonia at any moment in time that underlies our well-functioning national defense system,” he said.
The government ordered an extraordinary reservist training event on Thursday to be held from Dec. 2 to 5. The defense forces mobilized the 433rd Infantry Company to be formed by the Võru district of Kaitseliit, as well as the headquarters company of the 10th Headquarters Support and Signal Battalion, assigned to the reserve after the Spring Storm exercise in 2014, for the snap exercise codenamed “Okas”.
The National Defense Act that took effect this year allows the Estonian Defence Forces to mobilize reservists with just 24 hours’ notice. This is the first time the provision was implemented.