The Estonian Defence Forces’ mass exercise Siil 2022 to test the regional cooperation

The Estonian Defence Forces will conduct a mass exercise called Siil 2022 (Hedgehog 2022) from mid-May until the beginning of June next year that will test the military’s combat readiness and reaction capability in an international framework.

According to the Defence Forces, about 16,000 military personnel will take part in the exercise, among them Estonian conscripts, reservists, members of the Defence League, allied servicemen and active-duty military service members.

“With the exercise Siil 2022, it’s important and different from the previous exercises that we’re concentrating on the international framework,” the Chief of Staff of the Estonian military, Lieutenant General Martin Herem said in a statement.

“We want to exercise reacting to dangers in an international framework, together with the Northern Division and our Latvian colleagues. Almost half of the participants are reservists and their participation is of a key importance in obtaining combat readiness.”

Three Robinson R44 helicopters of the Estonian Defence Forces participating at the Siil 2018 exercise. Photo by the Estonian Defence Forces.

According to the Defence Forces, Siil 2022 is one of the largest military exercises held in Estonia after the Soviet occupation. It’s mostly taking part in southern Estonia and northern Latvia.

Siil is the largest exercise held by the Estonian military and it takes place every three to four years.

Cover: A group of Estonian soldiers at the Siil 2018 exercise. Photo by the Estonian Defence Forces.

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