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Local defence exercises will focus on Finland’s comprehensive security

Publication date 15.2.2024 16.06 | Published in English on 19.2.2024 at 9.00
Press release
Kaksi asetta kantavaa sotilaspukuista henkilöä Helsingin seudun ympäristöpalvelujen rakennuksen edessä talviaikaan

The Army will organize this spring’s local defence exercises from 1 to 8 March. Conscripts, reservists, Defence Forces salaried personnel and a considerable number of representatives of other authorities will take part in the exercises.

These exercises, which have aroused international interest, are aimed at enhancing local defenders’ readiness and combat capability, and the ability of authorities to operate together in rapidly changing situations across Finland.   The exercises will focus on the joint planning, leadership, and training and enhancing of local troops’ combat operations by actors involved in local security. 

- Local defence exercises are one illustration on the local level of the concept of comprehensive security often under discussion.  The exercises are aimed at ensuring that the society will function also during of an eventual crisis or disturbance, says Deputy Chief of Staff, Army Operations, Brigadier General Sami-Antti Takamaa.

At the beginning of March, Army troops and equipment can be seen in the cities and urban areas located close to exercise areas. 

Inter-agency cooperation on the local and regional level has been conducted in Finland for a long time, and well-functioning routines have been developed around it.  During the past ten years, in particular, local defence and local security have been developed to counter today’s security threats and align with changed administrative structures.  Conducting cooperation training between other authorities, organizations and companies strengthens national defence and makes the country able to respond quickly to different situations regardless of geographical location.  In addition to the Defence Forces, security authorities and other actors essential for the functioning of the society from different sectors on the local and regional level will take part in the local defence exercises.  

Reservists in an important role

Refresher training exercises keep up and enhance the capability of war time troops and individual reservists’ national defence skills and know-how.  Local forces are mainly made up of reservists. The exercises in their entirety contribute in a major way to keeping up  reservists’ know-how and performance. Some 650 reservists will practice their wartime task in the exercises. 

Exercise events in your area

Etelä-Karjala 1/24 (4.-8.3.2024)

  • Area: South Karelia (Lappeenranta, Rautjärvi, Taipalsaari, Ruokolahti, Parikkala, Luumäki, Savitaipale and Imatra)
  • Troops: approximately 600
  • Vehicles: approximately 80
  • Exercise director: Liutenant colonel Ari Määttä
  • Exercise PIO: Päivi Visuri, [email protected], puh. 0299 431 107

Lounais-Suomi 1/24 (1.-8.3.2024)

  • Area: South-western Finland: (Turku, Rauma, Pori)
  • Troops: approximately 300
  • Vehicles: approximately 60
  • Exercise director: Colonel Marko Kivelä 
  • Exercise PIO: Henna Mäntylä, [email protected], 0299 443 303

Keski-Suomi 1/24 (3.-8.3.2024)

  • Area: Central Finland, Kanta-Häme (Hattula, Hämeenlinna, Jyväskylä)
  • Troops: approximately 300
  • Vehicles: approximately 40
  • Exercise director: Colonel Petri Toivonen
  • Exercise PIO: Jessika Mikola, [email protected], 0299 442 414

Kehä 1/24 (3.-8.3.2024)

  • Area: Capital region and Itä-Uusimaa (Helsinki, Vantaa, Tuusula, Järvenpää, Sipoo, Porvoo, Kerava and Loviisa)
  • Troops: approximately 1000
  • Vehicles: approximately 200
  • Exercise director: Colonel Vesa Laitonen
  • Exercise PIO: Meri Leppänen, [email protected], 0299 421 235


Follow the exercise: 

#paikallisturvallisuus #paikallispuolustajat


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