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Latvian Land Forces (LF) / Sauszemes speki

According to the new NAF structure, the main units of the Land Forces will be the Special Task Unit and the Infantry Brigade. The Infantry Brigade will be a unit, which will provide a comprehensive combat training for the national battalions and combat support and logistics units. The above units will be NATO-compliant and ready to operate within the NATO High Readiness Forces. A working group was established in 2003 with a purpose to plan the development of the Brigade and elaborate the personnel and equipment schemes for it. The 2nd Infantry Battalion was established in 2002 and since 2004 has been a part of the LF. The mission of the Battalion is to prepare the soldiers of professional military service for participation in the international missions. At the same time, the Battalion must provide the training of the conscript service soldiers.

In 1994 the armed forces included 1,650 in the army. The armed forces were poorly equipped. In the early 1990s, donations of jeeps and field kitchens came from Germany, patrol boats from Germany and Sweden, and uniforms from Norway. The army's equipment includes two BRDM-2 reconnaissance vehicles and thirteen M-43 armored personnel carriers.

The mission of the LF is:

  • defence of the national land territories;
  • command and control;
  • combat and mobilisation readiness;
  • participation in the international operations;
  • participation in the crisis management;
  • explosive object disposal.

In 2003, the Land Forces (LF) continued to implement the reforms, which were started in the previous years. After a repeated review of the LF structure, the reform plans were amended in 2003 while the main task of the reorganisation was kept unchanged enhance the command and control system for the LF units and professionalisation of the 1st Infantry Battalion.

Achievements of 2003:

  • the 1st Infantry Battalion (LATBAT) has been developed in accordance with the Concept on Battalions Development;
  • conscript service soldiers of the Battalions combat support company have been replaced by the soldiers of career service;
  • participation in the international operations has been provided;
  • development planning of the Infantry Brigade has been commenced.

Plans for 2004:

  • develop the Land Forces in accordance with the NAF development plans and NATO Force Proposals;
  • continue the development of the 1st Infantry Battalion in accordance with the NATO requirements;
  • train units in accordance with the LF Tactical Doctrine ATP-35B;
  • by July 2004, establish the Infantry Brigade (LATBRIG) Staff and produce the LATBRIG Development Concept;
  • by December 2004, produce the Tactical Doctrine on the Baltic States Land Operations in collaboration with the Land Forces of Estonia and Lithuania;
  • by December 2004, prepare the Explosive Ordnance Disposal Platoon for its participation in the international operations;
  • continue the modernisation of the Artillery Wing and the training of personnel;
  • continue the development of the NAF Special Task Unit.

Extremely high density of former Soviet military units and institutions in Latvia (approx.700) caused the situation that a lot of dangerous explosives, anti-personnel mines, different emissions, damaged and defected ammunition, other hazardous materials were polluting vast Latvian rural territories the clearance and neutralisation of which challenged the Government being unable to allocate resources sufficient to these needs. Also problems concerning polluted water and soil in former Soviet military sites were not solved, then the storage and neutralisation of hazardous waste including dangerous chemicals, petroleum based compounds,rocket fuel, huge stocks of municipal waste left by Soviet army units, polluted sites in Liepaja former military seaport area etc.

One of the first multinational embedded training teams in Afghanistan in late 2008- was an effort between the Latvian Army and the Michigan National Guard as part of the U.S. State Partnership Program. For three months, Latvian soldiers and U.S. soldiers training in preparation for the OMLT mission, to mentor and advise the Afghan National Army. Beyond the training, multinational exercises such as Saber Strike, Bagram, Nemesis Sword, Immediate Response, Austere Challenge, Anaconda, and Rapid Trident also help spread the new TTPs, and the exchange of doctrinal advances.

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Page last modified: 26-11-2012 14:02:59 ZULU