UK to deploy troops to Baltics
British media disclosed on Thursday that the UK defense secretary Michael Fallon will announce long-term troop deployment to Baltic states.
The announcement will be made at the NATO meeting in Brussels. The move forms part of the US-German Transatlantic Capability Enhancement and Training initiative, which was announced at the NATO defense ministerial in June to coordinate military training and exercises in the Baltic states and Poland, BBC reported.
The British troops, reportedly numbering about 100, would be part of a new NATO training, evaluation and capacity-building mission in Poland and the Baltic states.
Fallon said that the deployment was meant to offer further security reassurance for Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, and Poland. According to Fallon, “the UK is committed to support the sovereignty of the democratic nations of Eastern Europe.”
Britain and Estonia have in recent years become formidable allies. Estonian troops served under British command in Afghanistan and the Royal Air Force has repeatedly provided jets for the Baltic Air Policing mission in the absence of local air defense capability. Four RAF Typhoons were deployed to Ämari Air Base, Estonia, at the beginning of this year.