More than 70 US Marines arrive in Estonia
This week over 70 U.S. Marines arrived in Estonia for the start of a four-month-long deployment. During their time in Estonia, the Marines will take part in training exercises with members of the Estonian Navy and Estonian Defense Forces (EDF).
"This deployment is a fantastic opportunity for our Marines to train with our allies," said Mobile Reconnaissance Company Commander Captain Brandon Klewicki.
"The integration of our forces with the Estonian Defense Forces (EDF) enhances our maritime situational awareness, and demonstrates our unified strength and commitment to regional security and stability," Klewicki added.
The deployment of U.S. Marines will be in Estonia until mid-July. During this time, they will work with Estonian navy on surveillance and maritime situational awareness, operating in various coastal and island areas throughout Estonian waters.
This period will also see the annual Spring Storm (Kevadtorm) military training exercise, in which the U.S. contingent will participate as part of the Estonian Navy. The same unit has spent time in Estonia before, having been part of the EDF's Siil (Hedgehog) 2022 major exercise from April to June last year.
Estonian Navy Chief of Staff Captain Indrek Hanson said, that the Estonian Navy participates in peacetime cooperation and maritime information exchanges with its allies on a daily basis. "This operation allows us to practice and prepare for the most effective possible cooperation with the allied naval forces, even in the event of a crisis or conflict," Hanson said.
For the duration of the operation, the U.S. contingent will be permanently stationed in Tallinn's Miinisadam Naval Base.
The US Marines in Estonia are part of the mobile reconnaissance company of Task Force 61/2 Naval Amphibious Forces (TF-61). Task Force 61/2 is a rapidly deployable coordination unit established to command the United States Fleet Marine Forces and assigned naval forces in support of the commander of the U.S. Sixth Fleet.
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Editor: Michael Cole