British-led naval task group in the Baltic sea is the largest British maritime operational deployment in Europe for decades, according to a press release issued by the British military.
“The Royal Navy and Royal Marines have stood side by side with the Baltic States during our shared history,” said the Commander of 3 Commando Brigade Royal Marines, Brigadier Matt Jackson.
“Most recently in Iraq and Afghanistan, but also 100 years ago during their struggle for independence,” he added.
“We are proud to be working together again during Baltic Protector” deployment, he added.
According to the press release, it is exactly 100 years since the Royal Navy successfully fought for the independence of the states of Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania from advancing Bolshevik forces, in the aftermath of the Russian Revolution,
Today, over 3000 personnel and 16 British warships and auxiliaries are operating in the Baltic Sea – the largest number for almost a century.
Royal Marine Commandos will now work with Lithuanian Armed Forces to train in urban surveillance and ambush tactics. During this period the Joint Expeditionary Force (JEF) will also practice covert amphibious insertions within each of the Baltic States.
Through regular exercises, Baltic Protector aims to develop JEF capabilities and interoperability so that when push comes to shove, they are ready to act, according to the press release.
The British-led task group “would probably be first on the scene in Northern Europe because we’re already in the area where the crisis is,” said Commodore Parkin.
“We are designed to fit into a larger NATO task group if Article 5 was activated, if that were to happen, but we can operate independently should we need to.”