President Kaljulaid visits Spring Storm exercise

President Kersti Kaljulaid visited the Estonian Defense Forces' Spring Storm exercise on Monday. May 4, 2020. Source: Kersti Kaljulaid/Facebook

President Kersti Kaljulaid visited the Estonian Defense Forces' Spring Storm (Kevadtorm) exercise on Monday, where she was acquainted with the course of the exercise thus far, met with Estonian and British military personnel as well as observed live fire exercises.

Despite the restrictions caused by the coronavirus crisis, Spring Storm has met its primary goal as future reservist units made up of conscripts have been staffed and trained, Kaljulaid said.

"As we could see and recognize on the spot, these are motivated, courageous and active fighters who will hopefully also retain their sense of unity and reaction speed in the reserves," the president was quoted by spokespeople as saying.

"For that we have to thank the conscripts and the active service personnel training them, who have had to remain in their barracks and training grounds since the start of the emergency situation, as a result of which, however, the EDF remained virtually untouched by the coronavirus," she added.

Kaljulaid was briefed on Spring Storm and this week's live fire exercises at the EDF's Central Training Area by Commander of the EDF Maj. Gen. Martin Herem and Commander of the 1st Infantry Brigade Col. Vahur Karus.

The president met with conscripts and active service personnel of the 1st Infantry Brigade's Command and Signal Battalion as well as those of the 21st Infantry Battalion's mortar battery. She also met with the British tank personnel serving in NATO Battlegroup Estonia as well as briefly observed live fire exercises in the Central Training Area.

This year's Spring Storm exercise, which is being held at the EDF's Central Training Area, began on April 25 and will last through May 8. In addition to allies and subunits of the 1st and 2nd Infantry Brigades, Cyber Command, the Air Force and Military Police are also taking part in the exercise.


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Editor: Aili Vahtla

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