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Estonian parliamentary committee deems further snap exercises necessary

The National Defence Committee of the Riigikogu examined the conducting and results of the Estonian Defence Forces' recent short-notice exercise Quill ("Okas") on Monday, reaching the conclusion that it is necessary to continue such reservist exercises.

Representatives of the Estonian Defence Forces and the Ministry of Defence provided committee members with an overview of the conducting as well as the results of the recent snap exercise as well as plans for future drills, spokespeople for the Riigikogu said.

"For Estonia, holding additional reservist trainings or tsting the readiness for mobilization is not a matter of choice but an obligation," committee chairman Hannes Hanso (SDE) said. "We must be sure that the system which has been built up over the years actually works. Our national defense must not be based on paper; it must actually function. That's why it must be checked in real life from time to time."

Hanso expressed hope that the recent extra reservist training will not be the last of its kind.

Of the 302 reservists summoned to the early December snap exercise, 265, or a total of 88 percent, showed up. Those who were unable to report within 48 hours most often cited being ill or working abroad as the reason why.

The goal of the extra drills was to practice staff command and control activities and mobilization as well as assess combat readiness. The objective was not to mobilize as many persons as possible but to test systems and procedures in place.

The Estonian Defence Forces plan on organizing at least one short-notice reservist training per year.

Editor: Editor: Aili Vahtla

Source: BNS

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