Tuesday, Minister of Defence of Estonia, Kalle Laanet visited the Special Operations Command of Estonian Defence Forces and received an overview of Estonia’s Special Operations capabilities, co-operation with the Allies and partners, and the participation of Task Force Takuba, in Operation Barkhane, in Mali.
The Minister also met with the Allied representatives, including the Command Element of the Baltic Region Special Operations Headquarters, previously located in Stuttgart, Germany, which has been located in Estonia since January this year.
‘It is very important to us that U.S. European Command for the U.S. Special Operations Command Element for the Baltic Region is located in Estonia to better support the integration of Allied Special Operations units and strengthen the security of the entire region,’ noted Laanet.
According to Minister of Defence Laanet, the Command Element being brought to Estonia has had in a significant positive impact on defence co-operation with the Allies, enhancing defence capability as a whole.
During the visit, the operators who served as part of the first Task Force Takuba in Mali introduced Minister of Defence Laanet to the equipment and weapons currently being used in the Special Operations Command.
Laanet emphasized that collective defence and co-operation with our Allies has become a routine alongside our independent defence capabilities. ‘We support our Allies far from our homeland and they support us here in Estonia. Only by working together in the name of a common goal are we better protected than ever before,’ he added.
The 10th Special Forces Group from Fort Carson, Colorado, which has started its service in Estonia, is an airborne unit consisting of special operators from the U.S. Army, Air Force, Navy and Marine Corps, and troops of U.S. Allies throughout the region. Prior to its arrival in the Baltic region, the unit served in Afghanistan, as part of the Resolute Support mission.
Additional information: press[at]kaitseministeerium[dot]ee