UK troops arrive in Estonia following NATO deployment

Soldiers from the 5th Battalion The Rifles Battlegroup (5 RIFLES), including members of an Armoured Engineer Squadron, Military Police Detachment, Artillery Group and Port Task Group have arrived in Estonia as part of a major NATO deployment.

The 120 soldiers are fundamental to setting up a UK headquarters in the country before the rest of the UK deployment arrives next month, increasing the total number of troops in Estonia to around 800.

According to a statement from the Ministry of Defence (MoD), the deployments are designed to assure NATO allies of the mutual commitment to collective European security and is one of four NATO multinational deployments to the eastern part of the Alliance.

Defence Secretary Sir Michael Fallon said: “In the face of an increasingly assertive Russia, NATO is stepping up its commitment to collective defence. British troops will play a leading role in Estonia and support our US allies in Poland, as part of wider efforts to defend NATO.

“Our rising defence budget means we can support those deployments in the long-term and strengthen our commitment to European security.”

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