At a meeting of defense ministers from the Nordic and Baltic countries (pictured) on Friday on the Swedish island of Gotland, which is considered a strategically important location, Pevkur said: “With the accession of Finland and Sweden [to NATO]The security of our region will change by leaps and bounds as the Baltic Sea becomes essentially a NATO lake, which means that the exchange of information about what is happening at sea and in the air will improve significantly,” notes the need for practical Steps based on this information.
“Estonia has also made important decisions in recent years to strengthen its maritime sector – both the merger of the Estonian Defense Forces (EDF) and Police and Border Protection Agency (PPA) fleets, as well as the procurement of Blue Spear anti-ship Missile systems and naval mines will increase the EDF’s ability to operate at sea and protect coastal areas in the near future.”
Due to its location in the middle of the Baltic Sea, between the coast of mainland Sweden and the coasts of Latvia and Estonia, Gotland, known as Ojamaa in Estonian, plays a key role in maintaining the region’s air and sea routes. Pevkur openly welcomed Sweden’s decision to to strengthen defenses there, even before announcing that the country would join NATO with Finland and end around two centuries of nominal neutrality.
The two countries’ entry into NATO, as well as an overview of Sweden’s build-up of Gotland’s defense and the creation of new military units for this purpose, were also discussed at Friday’s meeting, the defense ministry said.
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