Danish and German Troops In Latvia
An exercise involving the Danish mechanized infantry and the Bundeswehr troops currently takes place in Latvia. The operation is an element of reinforcement of the NATO Eastern Flank.
The exercise, involving the forces from Denmark, is scheduled to last until the end of September. A company of mechanized infantry was deployed, including ca. 180 soldiers equipped with the CV-9035 Mk III IFV’s. An element deployed by the Bundeswehr has also been sent to Latvia. The unit is involved in the joint training operations, together with the Latvian troops. Deployment of the above-mentioned elements was announced in the second half of August.
The Germans had announced that, within the scope of the “Persistence Presence” operation, they are going to temporarily deploy companies of mechanized infantry in Latvia and Poland, respectively hailing from the units of the 10th and 1st Armoured Divisions. The first rotational exercise of the Bundeswehr has been already completed. A motorized company of the German-French brigade maintained its presence in Latvia, for a short period of time. According to the information available, the Germans are going to take part in the Dragon exercise which is scheduled to take place in Poland, in the autumn.
Another element of this unit, along with the artillery, took part in the Polish part of the Saber Strike exercise in June this year. Chief of Staff of the Danish Army, Major General Hans-Christian Mathiesen, stressed the fact that the training currently realized in Latvia is going to prepare the troops to react to the full spectrum of threats, as the Danish officer stated, in his interview quoted by sargs.lv. In practical terms, the above means that scenarios covering a conventional conflict will also be considered in the exercise. Earlier on, the Danish forces were involved in the peacekeeping operation in Afghanistan.
A single rotational element of the US Army also maintains its presence in Latvia. On the other hand, in the second half of September (starting from 14th September) the Silver Arrow exercise is planned, involving more than 1000 troops of the allied forces coming from the USA, UK, Germany and Canada.
The discussed trainings are a part of the reinforcement of the NATO Eastern Flank, adopted during the Newport summit. The Danish forces had been involved in the rotational land forces exercises earlier as well. The reconnaissance element was temporarily present inn Latvia. Danish units also took part in the 2014 and 2015 editions of the Saber Strike exercise. In the latter case, a Leopard 2A5 element took part in the training activities within the territory of Poland.