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Estonia to increase participation in Mali mission

7. December 2015 - 14:46

In response to France’s request for support in the fight against extremists, Estonia has decided to increase its contribution to the missions in Mali to 20 members of the Defence Forces by sending two additional staff officers on a training mission.

Ministry of Defence Hannes Hanso said that the contribution proposed by Estonia meets the request for aid and assistance by France.

“We received a proposal to increase our participation in EU and UN operations in Africa and what was mainly expected were speedy contributions that express political support,” said Hanso. “At the same time, we will continue to analyse the options for stepping up our long-term contribution.”

France was looking for additional contributions from its allies to missions that the country is currently committed to in order to allow it to release some of its units for other assignments.

The deployment of two additional staff officers falls within the mandate requested from the Estonian Parliament for 2016, and no further requests for a mandate will be required.

Estonia is currently participating in the EU training mission (EUTM Mali) with a team of seven instructors and a staff officer. Estonia is also participating in the UN MINUSMA mission in Mali with two staff officers and an eight-member observation and advisory team.

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