Today the National Defence Committee of the Riigikogu (Parliament of Estonia) was given an overview of the conducting and results of the additional reservist training OKAS, and was convinced that it is necessary to continue with such reservist trainings.
“For Estonia, holding of additional reservist trainings or testing the readiness for mobilisation are not issues of choice, but an obligation,” Chairman of the National Defence Committee Hannes Hanso said. “We have to be sure that the system which has been built up over the years actually works.”
“Our national defence should not be based on papers. It must be really functioning. That is why it has to be checked in real life from time to time,” Hanso said. He expressed the hope that the recent additional reservist training OKAS would not be the last of its kind.
The Committee was explained that the goal of additional reservist training was to practice the control activities of the headquarters and calling up to service, and to assess combat readiness. The purpose of the exercise was not to mobilise as many persons as possible, but to test the systems.
302 reservists were called up for the additional reservist training, and 265, that is 88 percent, turned up. Those who were not able to turn up in 48 hours stated being ill or working abroad as the main reasons.
Hanso wanted to know how the Defence Forces would deal with those who had ignored the call. “People must know that we are really serious about it,” Hanso said. He got a reply that everyone who did not turn up for the additional reservist training would get feedback in some way. It is not impossible that sanctions would be applied with regard to some of them.
The Committee was also introduced the plan of future reservist trainings. The aim is to hold at least one extraordinary reservist training every year.
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