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Army Combined Fires Exercise 2016 is over

Publication date 25.11.2016 11.14
Press release
A tank firing in a snowy forest landscape

Army Combined Fires Exercise 2016 is over on 25 November at the Rovajärvi firing range.

The exercise was the Finnish Defence Forces’ largest overall live firing and leadership exercise of this year. All in all around 4,000 conscripts, reservists and regular personnel from all the Army brigade-level units and the Border Guard took part. A detachment of 31 soldiers from Sweden’s Artillery Regiment (Artilleriregementet, A9) also participated in the exercise as part of the ongoing bilateral cooperation between the Finnish and Swedish Armies.

This exercise proved that interoperability was proficient between different branches of service as well as between Finnish and Swedish troops. All in all the goals of this exercise were reached. Command and control networks were reliable and also on individual level we learned new things. The whole exercise went through safely, which is very important to us, says the Commander of the exercise Colonel Petteri Rokka from Army Academy.

Annually organized Army Combined Fires Exercise develops formation and task force firing as well as interoperability between branches of service on a broad spectrum. The exercise is made up of task force and system training phases that focused on especially field artillery and infantry live firing, planning of firing and leadership. In relation to Army activities, also research and artillery field tests were conducted during the exercise.

During the exercise, the aim of the bilateral cooperation between the Finnish and Swedish Armies was to develop joint fire know-how and improve the interoperability of the troops. The exercise was approved by the Ministry of Defence as a part of the Finnish Army’s international exercise plan for 2016.

The Army’s Combined Fires Exercise was led by the Army Academy and commanded by the Army Academy’s Deputy Commandant, Colonel Petteri Rokka, and Inspector of the Artillery, Colonel Pasi Pasivirta. The next Army Combined Fires Exercise will take place in November, 2017.