Ministry of Defense Secretary-General Krsitjan Prikk decorated departing Danish soldiers based at Tapa, east of Tallinn, with service medals Friday, as the unit prepares to rotate out, to be replaced by compatriot personnel.
Secretary-General Prikk thanked the Danish soldiers for their ongoing contribution to ensuring the security of Estonia and NATO. The personnel formed a part of the Enhanced Forward Presence (eFP) battlegroup, which is British-led and ultimately under the command of the Estonian Defense Forces' (EDF) 1st Infantry Brigade.
"Danes have always existed for Estonians at the most important moments in history," Prikk noted, according to a defense ministry press release.
"Just as a Danish company played an important role in the Estonian War of Independence, in the fight for Estonian freedom, today there is a unit of the same dimensions, defending the same freedoms," he went on.
The next Danish contingent will serve at Tapa through to year end, when it will be replaced by a French armored unit.
Prikk also recalled the 2016 decision which led to the eFP becoming fact, along with sister battlegroups in Latvia, Lithuania and Poland.
"Allies who perceive the dangers of Russia from afar also understood that changes in the security order after the events in Ukraine will not pass so easily," he said.
The eFP at Tapa became fact in 2017, and followed the 2016 Warsaw Summit, which itself was a response to the annexation of the Crimea region by the Russian Federation in 2014, and the ongoing insurgency warfare in eastern Ukraine since then.
Danish units had previously served at Tapa in 2018, and the country's airforce has also contributed to the separate NATO Baltic air policing duties, where it provided U.S.-built F-16 jets.
French and Belgian units also contribute to the eFP at Tapa.
A little over 200 Danish volunteers served in Estonia during the 1918-1920 War of Independence, along with larger numbers of Finns and soldiers from the other Nordic countries, and troops from Britain, France and other countries.
Editor: Andrew Whyte