New milestones established in defense cooperation between Estonia, Germany

  • 2021-07-20
  • BNS/TBT Staff

TALLINN - Estonian Minister of Defense Kalle Laanet is on a two-day working visit to Germany where he met with with his German counterpart Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer; the two defense ministers reaffirmed good bilateral relations and the shared views of Estonia and Germany on defense and security policies.

Topics discussed at the meeting included the security of the Baltic Sea region, new opportunities for cooperation in cyber defense, artificial intelligence and foreign missions as well as transatlantic relations and the impact of China on global politics.

Laanet extended his condolences to Kramp-Karrenbauer regarding the victims who lost their lives in devastating floods in Germany.

"I am extremely saddened by so many people suffering and losing their lives and so many homes having been destroyed as a result of these floods. The Bundeswehr is providing invaluable assistance in regions that have been hit the hardest. I hope that through joint effort, life will return to normal once more. Estonia is ready to provide assistance if needed," the minister said.

Laanet thanked Kramp-Karrenbauer for Germany's contribution to the policing of the Baltic airspace, which is one of the best examples of NATO's deterrence and defense posture in the Baltic Sea region.

"Germany is a strong ally to Estonia and one that has carried out 14 rotations in the Baltics as part of the NATO air policing mission, eight of them at the Amari Air Base [in Estonia]. I believe that Germany will soon guard the Baltic airspace from Estonia once more," he said.

The two defense ministers welcomed a joint project that will see Germany procure field hospitals for Ukraine and the Estonian War and Disaster Medicine Center provide basic field hospital training to Ukrainian teams and instructors. The project will boost cooperation between Estonia and Germany in military medicine. The mobile field hospital Role 2 is produced by the Estonian company Semetron.

Also discussed at the meeting was the two states' cooperation in cyber defense. Estonia is interested in innovative cyber defense solutions as well as research and development activities with Germany. Germany as one of the founding states of the NATO Cooperative Cyber Defense Center of Excellence has been a long-term participant in the center's work.

As part of his visit, Laanet also met with deputy chairman of the defense committee of the German parliament Karl A. Lamers and commander of the Bundeswehr Operations Command Erich Pfeffer. The defense minister is also scheduled to visit together with Estonian defense industry entrepreneurs German businesses KMW, Rheinmetall and Airbus.