Military of Estonia

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The Estonian Defence Forces consists of 5,120 persons in uniform. The 2002 state budget allocated 2% of the gross domestic product for defence expenditures.

The Estonian Defence Forces are a reserve force, and as such, "all physically and mentally healthy male citizens" must undergo compulsory military service for the duration of either 8 or 11 months, during which time the conscripts are taught the basic skills needed to be mobilized into active duty.[1]


Estonian Defence Forces
Military manpower
Military age 18 years of age
Availabilitymales age 15-49: 360,440 (2003 est.)
Fit for military service 283,278 (2003 est.)
Reaching military age annually males: 11,123 (2003 est.)
Military expenditures
Dollar figure $155 million (FY02)
Percent of GDP 2% (FY02)


[edit] Organisation

The Estonian Defence Forces consist of regular military units, the Kaitsevägi, totalling 5,120 officers and men, and a voluntary corps, the Defence League (Kaitseliit) with about 10 000 soldiers. The Defence Forces are stationed within four defence districts with headquarters in Tallinn, Rakvere, Tartu, Pärnu.

Estonia cooperates with Latvia and Lithuania in the joint infantry battalion BALTBAT and naval squadron BALTRON which can be deployed for peacekeeping operations.

  • Army
  • Navy
  • Air Force
  • Defence League
  • Border Guards

[edit] Estonian Army (Maavägi)

The Estonian Army consists of 9 battalions:

  • Kuperjanov Independent Infantry Battalion
  • Pärnu Independent Infantry Battalion
  • Peace Operations Centre
  • Scouts Battalion
  • Artillery Group
  • Viru Independent Infantry Battalion
  • Air Defence Battalion
  • Independent Signal Battalion
  • Independent Guard Battalion

[edit] Estonian Navy (Merevägi)

The Estonian Navy has one naval base in Miinisadam and operates one minesweeper division:

  • EML Admiral Pitka - command and support ship, ex-Danish Beskytteren, modified Hvidbjørnen-class
  • EML Tasuja - naval diving and support ship, ex-Danish Lindormen, Lindormen class
  • EML Ahti - cutter, ex-Danish Maagen class
  • EML Sulev - minehunter, ex-German Lindau class
  • EML Wambola - minehunter, ex-German Lindau class
  • EML Vaindlo - minesweeper, ex-German Frauenlob class
  • EML Olev - minesweeper, ex German Frauenlob class
  • EML Ristna - patrol boat, ex-Finnish Rihtiniemi class
  • EML Suurop - patrol boat, ex Finnish Rihtiniemi class

[edit] Estonian Air Force (Õhuvägi)

The Air Force has an air base in Ämari and operates two Antonov An-2s and four Robinson R44 helicopters. The Border Guard Aviation Group is based at Tallinn Airport and operates two Let L-410 UVPs and Mil Mi-8 helicopters. Two L-39 are being leased and are set to perform air defense missions.

Air defence batteries are equipped with 100 ZU-23-2s. Estonian primary radar system is integrated with Baltic States radar system network BALTNET. NATO jets based in Lithuania are also involved in the patrolling and protection of Estonian air space.

[edit] Insignia

NATO CodeOF-10OF-9OF-8OF-7OF-6OF-5OF-4OF-3OF-2OF-1OF-D-Student Officer
Image:Flag of Estonia.svg Estonia (Edit) No Equivalent Image:ES-Army-OF9.gif Image:ES-Army-OF8.gif Image:ES-Army-OF7.gif Image:ES-Army-OF6.gif Image:ES-Army-OF5.gif Image:ES-Army-OF4.gif Image:ES-Army-OF3.gif Image:ES-Army-OF2.gif Image:ES-Army-OF1a.gif Image:ES-Army-OF1b.gif Image:ES-Army-OF1c.gif No Equivalent
Kindral Kindralleitnant Kindralmajor Brigaadikindral Kolonel Kolonelleitnant Major Kapten Leitnant Nooremleitnant Lipnik
Image:Flag of Estonia.svg Estonia (Edit) Image:ES-Army-OR9a.png Image:ES-Army-OR9b.png Image:ES-Army-OR9c.png Image:ES-Army-OR8a.png Image:ES-Army-OR8b.png Image:ES-Army-OR7.png Image:ES-Army-OR6.png Image:ES-Army-OR5.png Image:ES-Army-OR4.png No insignia
Ülemveebel Staabiveebel Vanemveebel Veebel Nooremveebel Vanemseersant Seersant Nooremseersant Kapral Reamees

[edit] Recent history

In 2004, Estonia joined NATO, which had been one of its foremost priorities since the restoration of independence. The United States is among the countries with which Estonia has very close cooperation in the defence and security fields. Estonia utilizes many weapons produced by Israel Military Industries, including the UZI submachinegun, Galil rifles and IMI Negev machine guns.

[edit] Equipment

Armoured vehicles


  • MAN 4520

Anti-tank weapons

  • B-300


  • H61-37
  • FH-70 A1

Anti-aircraft weapons

Infantry weapons


[edit] See also

[edit] External links

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