NATO countries start on Monday large-scale security cooperation exercises on the territory of the former Soviet republics in the Baltic region, the Estonian military said.
The US-led Saber Strike 2013 drills involve some 2,000 personnel from Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, the United States, Norway, Poland and the UK, as well as troops from Finland, which is not a NATO country.
This year’s exercise will be conducted in all three Baltic States: in Lithuania - General Adolfas Ramanauskas combat training center located in Nemencine and Pabrade training area, Latvia – at the Adazi training area and in Estonia - at Amari air base and cities of Tapa and Tartu.
The program of the drills, which will continue through June 14, comprises a brigade-level command post exercise and computer assisted exercise, as well as company-level field and situational training exercises.
"Latvia will host the practical part of the exercises," Lt. Col. Tiit Paljak, the Estonian official tasked with planning the exercise, said earlier.
According to US Army Europe officials, Saber Strike exercise “aims to improve joint and combined interoperability between the US Army and partner nations, and also help prepare participants to successfully operate in a joint, multinational, interagency, integrated environment.”