This year's annual Spring Storm (Kevadtorm) large-scale military exercise will end today. The Estonian Defense Forces are hoping that necessary amount of conscripts will be cleared by a medical committee for summer call-ups despite the emergency situation.
"It's a challenge compared to the Canadian Prairies and fields of Great Britain. The landscape here is more difficult, but we have been training and can manage," NATO Enhanced Forward Presence (eFP) battlegroup gunner Brown told "Aktuaalne kaamera" on Thursday.
More than a thousand soldiers are taking part in Spring Storm's live firing exercises.
"We follow the government guidelines. We cannot exit the Tapa compound. But hopefully the restrictions will soon be eased and we can go to Tartu and see Tallinn Old Town," Lt. Smith, Commander of the battlegroup tank subdivision, said.
These men will soon be home, but July call-ups to conscription still lie ahead. The Defense Resources Agency (KRA) cannot send call-up selectees into the EDF that have not been cleared by a medical committee, which have not been operating due to the coronavirus crisis. Lt. Col. Targo Lusti, chief doctor of the EDF, says that there will not be a shortage of conscripts this summer.
"We know that around 1,500 selectees have been cleared by committees as of now. We are a few hundred short of 2,000 and they will probably be cleared on time. Medical committees will be reinstated from Monday," Lusti said.
This year's Spring Storm exercise taking place at the EDF's central polygon is divided into two parts. A field exercise took place from April 25 to 30, during which the participants went through the given tactical situation, while live-fire exercises are taking place on the central training grounds from May 1 to 8, during which the cooperation of infantry and combat support units in a real battle situation are mainly trained.
Editor: Anders Nõmm