RUKLA, Estonia – There was a Transfer of Authority at the UK-led enhanced Forward Presence (eFP) Battle Group Estonia on Thursday, May 16, 2019 when the French military took over from Belgium.
“This multinational commitment is an excellent opportunity to enhance the interoperability of our forces with those of the framework nation, the host nation and all other contributing nations, including of course UK. This also goes towards further improvement of our soldiers’ capabilities and our equipment in operational conditions. I am very proud to be the deputy Commander of eFP Mission in Estonia,” said Colonel Damien de Besombes, French SNR.
For the next 8 months, French soldiers will develop interoperability with their British comrades at all levels and in all domains: combat, manoeuver, firing, HQ procedures as well as logistic support. Training exercises, such as CRIMSON legionnaire (UK-FR ) will also allow French soldiers to maintain a high level of readiness.
The French detachment, comprised of approximately 300 soldiers, is divided into a combined arms tactical grouping of nearly 200 soldiers and a national support element of 100 soldiers.
4 Leclerc main battle tanks, 13 VBCI (Infantry Combat vehicles), 4 VAB (Armored personal carrier), 7 VBL (light armored vehicles) make up the main combat elements of this detachment. National support elements, engineer platoon and an artillery observation team are also integrated in the Lynx detachment.
“I am very proud to be the deputy Commander of eFP Mission in Estonia”
Fully deployed in June 2017, NATO’s enhanced forward presence comprises multinational forces provided by framework nations and other contributing Allies on a voluntary, fully sustainable and rotational basis. They are based on four rotational battalion-size battle groups that operate in concert with national home defence forces and are present at all times in the host countries.
Canada, Germany, the United Kingdom and the United States are the framework nations for the robust multinational presence in Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia and Poland respectively.