The Estonian government announced on 22 March its intention to deploy up to 50 troops to Mali to support the French military’s Operation ‘Barkhane’ regional counter-insurgency mission. Parliamentary approval is now being sought for the deployment.
The contingent would be based at Gao in northeast Mali for a year and tasked with protecting the local Barkhane base and its surroundings, an Estonian Ministry of Defence (MoD) spokesman told Jane’s .
“The Estonian Defence Forces are considering sending an infantry platoon on armoured personnel carriers from the Scouts Battalion,” the MoD spokesman said. “The platoon will be using Finnish-made Patria Pasi XA-188 armoured personnel carriers.”
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