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Local Defence Units Train All Over Finland

Army 4.9.2018 8.15
Press release
Local Defence Units Train All Over Finland

Army brigade-level units are organising six local defence exercises between 10–14 September in South Karelia, South Savo, Kymenlaakso, Lapland, North Karelia, Satakunta, Uusimaa and Southwest Finland.

The Finnish Defence Forces is training in local defence operations in eight regions around Finland in September. The goal of the exercises is to develop and train the readiness and command capabilities of the local defence units and to improve the competence of conscripts, reservists and salaried personnel in the tasks planned for local units.

– Local defence is a significant part of our pre-emptive capability. By training together with other authorities we maintain our capability to respond to quickly developing situations and complex threats, says Brigadier General Rami Saari, Deputy Chief of Staff Army Operations, when describing the importance of the exercises.

A total of 4,100 persons will participate in the exercises. The participants represent the Finnish Defence Forces, the Regional State Administrative Agency, the Centre for Economic Development, Transport and the Environment, Finavia, local authorities, rescue departments, police, Border Guard, hospital districts and Customs.

Blank ammunition will be used during the exercises. They do not pose a threat to bystanders but cause some noise. The exercises also include many military vehicles, such as armoured personnel carriers.

The exercises are listed in the Finnish Defence Forces’ Action Plan. Some of the conscripts participating in the exercises will muster out on 19 September.

More information about local defence available here (in Finnish).

Six Local Defence Exercises

The Army Academy will organize exercise Etelä-Karjala 18 in the area of Lappeenranta, Joutseno and Taipalsaari 10-14 September 2018. Approximately 200 people will participate in the exercise. The Exercise Director will be Lieutenant Colonel Antti Pyykönen from Army Academy.

The Jaeger Brigade will organize exercise Lappi 18 in the area of Ivalo–Sodankylä–Rovaniemi 10-14 September 2018. Approximately 320 people will participate in the exercise: 60 of them are conscripts and 50 reservists. The Exercise Director will be the Jaeger Brigade’s Chief of Operations, Lieutenant Colonel Jarmo Mattila.

The Guard Jaeger Regiment will organize exercise Kehä 18 in the area of western Uusimaa. Approximately 530 people will participate in the exercise. About 360 of them are conscripts and 100 reservists. A total of some 100 vehicles will participate in the exercise. The Exercise Director will be the Chief of Staff of the Guard Jaeger Regiment, Lieutenant Colonel Mika Kavén.

The Kainuu Brigade will organize exercise Joensuu 18 in the areas around Joensuu. The exercise will mostly take place around Joensuu and in the municipalities of Kontiolahti and Liperi. Approximately 1,000 people will participate in the exercise: 270 of them are conscripts and 260 reservists. The Exercise Director will be the Director of the North Karelia Regional Office, Lieutenant Colonel Janne Myller.

The Karelia Brigade’s Kymi 18 exercise in the areas in South Savo and Kymenlaakso will have over 1,000 people. About 440 of them are conscripts and 260 reservists. The troops will be operating in the areas of Mikkeli, Puumala, Savonlinna and Vekaranjärvi. The Exercise Director will be the Deputy Commander of Karelia Brigade, Colonel Arto Ikonen.

The Pori Brigade will organize exercise Syystammi-Höstek 18 in the Satakunta and Southwest Finland area. Exercise troops will mainly be operating in Turku and in the areas of surrounding municipalities and cities. Approximately 1,300 people will participate in the exercise: 730 of them are conscripts and 350 reservists. A total of some 70 armoured vehicles will participate in the exercise. The Exercise Director will be the Deputy Commander of Pori Brigade, Colonel Asko Valta.

Follow the exercises on social media!

You can follow the exercises through the Finnish Army social media channels with the hashtag #paikallispuolustus.