NATOʼs eFP: 150 SVK personnel deploy to Latvia to undertake allotted tasks

Additional 150 Slovak personnel are leaving for Latvia to undertake allotted tasks. This is a follow-on deployment after the engagement of Task Force Štefánik in NATO’s enhanced Forward Presence (eFP) in the Baltics last year. The personnel will join another two liaison officers who have been serving as part of the NATO eFP BG Latvia since November 2017. Minister of Defence Peter Gajdoš and Chief of Defence Lt Gen Daniel Zmeko today came to bid their farewell to the departing troops during a pre-deployment ceremony at Martin-based 11th Mechanised Battalion.

On the role of SVK Armed Forces troops on eFP, SVK Minister of Defence said: “I want to make clear that our troops will undertake no combat missions. On the contrary, they are heading for Latvia to carry out tasks on the principle of solidarity. They will play their part in eliminating whatever threats the Alliance may face, and train together for a joint response to a potential aggression.” He further noted that Slovakia seeks to be an active contributor to NATOʼs collective defence rather than being only a consumer of security guarantees.

Chief of Defence Lt Gen Daniel Zmeko confirmed that the deploying personnel are fully ready at all levels to take on their role. “That is why I firmly believe that all demanding tasks, be they training or operational, will be accomplished to the full extent,” he added.

Štefánik II Contingent Commander Maj Vladimír Moško said: “During the pre-deployment training we were truly devoted mainly to tactics and operating procedures on which we consulted our foreign partner in order to ensure standardization.”

The SVK force contribution is comprised of a Mechanised Company, a Military Police team, a National Support Element, a Repairs Platoon, and a team of medics. They will operate under the Canadian-led eFP BG Latvia on Ādaži Training Area for 6 months and will be replaced by another rotation of troops in January 2019.

The multinational NATO eFP BG Latvia comprises service members from 8 countries: Canada (eFP Framework Nation), Albania, Czech Republic, Italy, Poland, Slovakia, Slovenia and Spain.

Author: MO SR - KOd, Photo: MO SR - Ivan Kelement - Date: 21.06.2018
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