Prime Minister Jüri Ratas has thanked Polish personnel involved in NATO air policing duty at Ämari air base, west of Tallinn, as they hand over to the incoming French air force.
"I had a video call with Polish troops in Ämari," Ratas wrote on his social media account Wednesday evening.
"Thanked [Poland] for patrolling the skies over [the] Baltics. Solidarity among NATO allies is very important during [the] COVID-19 crisis," the prime minister went on, extending a warm welcome to the incoming French personnel.
Some of the latter spent over a week traversing Europe by rail with their equipment, a mode of transport sparked by the coronavirus pandemic and its fallout. The bulk of the French air force personnel arrived by plane.
I had a video call with Polish troops in Ämari. Thanked ???????? for patrolling the skies over Baltics. Solidarity among @NATO Allies is very important during COVID-19 crisis, we appreciate your contribution especially high. Warm welcome to ????????, who will start their mission soon. pic.twitter.com/izDqysMGcF— Jüri Ratas (@ratasjuri) April 29, 2020
NATO Baltic air policing dates back to 2004 when Estonia joined the alliance, and operates on a rotating basis, the Polish air force arriving at the beginning of this year. It is separate from the NATO Enhanced Forward Presence (eFP) battlegroup, based in Tapa, which is U.K.-led.
Editor: Andrew Whyte