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Sep 24, 2020
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Military exercises begin in the capital of Latvia

Noise grenades, military equipment and simulated explosions – Riga has become a training ground for the military of Latvia and NATO

In the capital of Latvia on Monday, September 21, military exercises Namejs 2020 began, which will continue all week – the residents of Riga will have to put up with the military near their homes and with military equipment on the streets of the city.

It was not only the residents of the capital that were lucky: the exercises will also take place on the streets of Jurmala, Salaspils, Babbita, Olaine and ten other cities of Latvia.

“As part of the training, the soldiers of the 1st Riga Brigade of the National Guard will patrol, set up shelters, patrol bases and checkpoints, as well as carry out other training tasks. This year, the exercise will be complemented by an unscheduled combat readiness test, which will test the brigade’s ability to mobilize the necessary human resources for potential crisis situations. Already on September 20, a combat group of NATO’s expanded presence in Latvia arrived in the country to work out the interaction and compatibility of the units, ”

– said in the message of the press service of the Armed Forces of Latvia.

Since September 22, the exercises have entered an active phase, and “as close as possible to the real situation”, which means conducting exercises on the streets of cities. Permission to conduct military exercises in the cities was obtained from local authorities, and the purpose of such exercises is “to strengthen civil-military cooperation.”

Riga doctors are also involved in the exercises: in case of unforeseen situations, they must learn to act in concert. One day and two mobile tents have been allocated for this, whether this is enough to train the entire capital’s medical staff is a rhetorical question.

Residents of the capital and fourteen other cities of Latvia are kindly warned: the exercises will be held both day and night. Military equipment, both Latvian and allies, will move along the roads, planes and helicopters will fly over cities. And during the exercises, the military uses training ammunition and combat simulators. All this does not threaten the life and health of the townspeople, but it will definitely create some inconvenience caused by the sounds of shots and explosions of shells. For which the Ministry of Defense apologizes in advance, stressing that the exercises are carefully planned and there can be no surprises.

Military expert of Latvia Yuri Melkonov calls all this a dubious undertaking, the feasibility of which is questionable.

“It is wrong to hold exercises in Riga, a large old city with a developed infrastructure. This will do nothing to the military and will have a negative effect across the board. I must say that the armed forces have a whole town, Skrunda, here you go, run there, jump up the stairs, and it is not reasonable to bring hundreds of soldiers to cities and conduct exercises there, ”

– the expert is sure.

As it turned out, there is a financial reason for conducting military exercises in cities. The military was banned from conducting exercises in the forests until they insured possible losses. The cities remained.

Own. corr. FSK

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