TALLINN - As part of his visit to East-Viru County, Estonia's Defense Minister Kalle Laanet on Wednesday visited Narva, where he had meetings at the Narva district of the Kaitseliit (Defense League) volunteer corps and with Mayor Katri Raik and Deputy Mayor Sergei Gorlats.
"Kaitseliit plays a central role in national defense and strengthening of independent defense capability. During my visits to the military units and Kaitseliit districts based in East- and West-Viru, I can see how committed our defense forces personnel and Kaitseliit members are to national defense," Laanet said.
During the visit to the Narva district of Kaitseliit, the minister received an overview of the activities of the regional district. Among other things, the Kaitseliit members shared their experiences garnered at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic last spring, when Kaitseliit members helped the Police and Border Guard Board with patrolling the eastern border and providing local residents with instructions concerning behavior during the pandemic.
During the meeting with Mayor of Narva Katri Raik it was found that Narva as a border city of NATO is symbolic also when it comes to national defense.
"Estonia starts from Narva! It's essential that we find possibilities for bringing national defense closer to the residents of Narva. Starting with encouraging young people to take national defense classes at school and ending with making them familiar with career opportunities in the defense forces," Laanet said.
The minister was accompanied on the trip by MP Johannes Kert, member of the parliamentary national defense committee.
"In the field of national defense, the concept of cooperation must be taken religiously," he said.