More combat readiness checks for National Guard

The latest series of combat readiness checks for Latvia's National Guard (Zemessardze) will get underway this week, the Defense Ministry said Thursday. 

Soldiers of the 1st and 3rd NAtional Guard Districts, roughly corresponding with the Kurzeme and Vidzeme regions of Latvia, will be subject to "high-readiness inspections to assess units' abilities to perform tactical tasks and identify future areas for improvement," the National Armed Forces said.

Much of the focus will be on the decision-making abilities of local commanders and troop leaders. 

"Combat readiness inspection tasks are not only to verify and exercise unit leadership skills and the ability to execute orders but also to test the ability of sub-units to conduct object protection and deployment tasks," a release said.

As reported by LSM, the latest checks come soon after snap drills in the eastern Latgale region and form part of a four-year plan to make regional units more capable of acting without requiring explicit orders from central command for ever single task to speed up and improve response times to any potential threat.

As usual, the armed forces are asking for the public's help and understanding if they see troops and military equipment on the move.

Nor are land forces the only ones being put through their paces this week. On the Baltic Sea, Latvian ships are participating in international exercises too.

From 2 to 15 September, Latvian naval ships "Virsaitis" and "Imanta" will take part in exercises dubbed "Northern Coasts" in Danish and German waters.

Tasks will include minesweeping and improving abilities to work with allies from 14 other countries: Denmark, Germany, Lithuania, Estonia, Finland, Norway, Sweden, USA, France, Poland, Canada, the Netherlands, Belgium and Spain.

Meanwhile Germany and France have taken over Baltic Air police duties from the UK and Portugal. France will lead the mission until the end of the year, with four Mirage jets based at Siauliai airbase in Lithuania. Germany will provide four Eurofighter Typhoon which will fly out of Amari in Estonia.

 

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