Kevadtorm to become one of the largest exercises in Estonia’s neighbourhood
Eestlased Eestis 29 May 2013  EWR
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Ministry of Defence N
The largest Defence Forces exercise of the year, Kevadtorm, has grown with each year and is now one of the largest international exercises in the region, said Minister of Defence Urmas Reinsalu while on a visit to the exercise today.

“The fact that over 5,000 Defence Forces and Defence League members, reservists and public servants are practising here together how to defend their country sends a strong signal that we are able to defend ourselves and that national defence is a common cause.”

Reinsalu said Kevadtorm had long ceased to be merely an Estonian exercise, but one in which all of Estonia’s allies participate. “This year, units from our allies the United Kingdom, Belgium and Latvia, Lithuania and Poland are all participating, showing that we are not practising alone but rather with our allies,” said Reinsalu.

He visited the general staff of Kevadtorm, where he received an overview of what had transpired at the exercise to this point. Reinsalu then toured the exercise area and saw what the different units were doing.

“I am glad that at this year’s Kevadtorm, fighter aircraft and naval vessels are participating for the first time and that interoperability between the three main branches of the armed forces – army, navy, and air force,” Reinsalu said.

Reinsalu added that he hoped that people living in the vicinity of the exercise would take an understanding attitude. “Well-trained Defence Forces units are in the interests of all Estonian people. Local residents who allow the Defence Forces to practise on their own land and the neighbourhood help ensure the security of their own family and home,” Reinsalu said.

Kevadtorm is a final exam for the conscripts in the infantry battalion; after the exercise they will be assigned to the reserves. The 11th Kevadtorm will be carried out primarily in the Defence Forces’ central artillery range in Kuusalu and Kadrina municipality, but there will also be action taking place in Tapa, Albu, Aegviidu, Anija, Raasiku and Jõelähtme municipalities. A few operations will also be conducted within Tallinn city limits and in Loksa.
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