Danish reinforcements land in Latvia to boost NATO presence

April 26 saw the first soldiers of the First Brigade of the Royal Danish Armed Forces arriving in Latvia, to boost NATO's defensive capacity on its eastern flank.

"Denmark is a reliable ally of Latvia, which has repeatedly confirmed its readiness to strengthen the security of our region by sending about 750 soldiers of the Royal Danish Armed Forces to Latvia in addition to Denmark's current involvement in the NATO Multinational Division Headquarters North," said Latvian Minister of Defense Artis Pabriks.

The Danish troops will be deployed alongside troops from other NATO member nations at the Ādaži base and will be part of the Mechanized Infantry Brigade of the Land Forces. During their stay in Latvia, Danish soldiers will take part in joint exercises with the National Armed Forces and units of other allied countries.

Danish troops in Latvia

Soldiers and technical units of the Danish Armed Forces, including armored vehicles, will continue to arrive in Latvia until the beginning of May, and members of the public are advised not to be alarmed if they see their columns or checkpoints on the roads.

It has already been reported that in response to Russia's invasion of Ukraine, the Danish parliament on 21 April supported by a majority a proposal to send up to 1,000 Danish troops to Latvia. Denmark has previously sent troops to the NATO battalion based in Estonia.

Denmark has played an important role in the development of the Latvian Armed Forces and has been one of the leading Nordic countries in providing political support and practical assistance to Latvia since it regained its independence.

Before Russia’s illegal and illegitimate annexation of Crimea in 2014, NATO had no plans to deploy combat troops in the eastern part of the Alliance. However, taking into account the clear threat from Russia, an enhanced forward presence was first established in 2017, with the creation of four multinational battalion-size battlegroups in Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland, on a rotational basis.

Following Russia’s unprovoked invasion of Ukraine, Allies have agreed to establish four more multinational battlegroups in Bulgaria, Hungary, Romania and Slovakia. This brings the total number of multinational battlegroups to eight, extending all along NATO’s eastern flank – from the Baltic Sea in the north to the Black Sea in the south.

Allies have also sent additional ships, planes and troops to NATO territory in eastern and south-eastern Europe, further reinforcing the Alliance’s deterrence and defense posture.

 

 

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