Soldiers of Special Operations unit get ready for standby in NRF

Soldiers of the Lithuanian Forces Special Operation Unit take part in the international crisis response exercise NOBLE SWORD-07 in Spain from April 23 to May 4. The exercise is arranged to prepare soldiers for duty in the NATO Response Force (NRF) in 2008 and 2009.


Two NRF components - land and special operations - take part in the exercise "NOBLE SWORD-07". Exercise for land forces NOBLE LIGHT-07 is simultaneously held in Italy.


Lithuanian squadron "Aitvaras" is to complete several of the main NRF special operations tasks in Spain: special surveillance and observation, short-term small-scale offensive countermeasures, terrorist seizure and neutralisation operations, and other.


Soldiers of the Special Operations Unit were assisted by the helicopter with crew of the Lithuanian Air Force Special Helicopter Element in completing special air operations. Land operations were completed using modified jeeps "Land Rover Defender" purchased by ad hoc order for Special Operations Unit.

This is the first time three officers of the Lithuanian Special Forces Unit are part of the special operations staff during the NRF exercise. Their task in the exercise is special operations planning and fulfilment at the level of superior staff component.


The exercise is a great opportunity for Lithuanian and other nations" Special Forces soldiers to advance their teamwork in task fulfilment and to improve their skills as well as to get ready for the duty in the NRF in 2008 and taking part in joint operations if necessary. Two squadrons of Special Operations Forces "Aitvaras-05" and "Aitvaras-06" were on duty in the NRF for a half-year each in 2005-2006.


Exercise experience shows that after deciding to send the NRF to the crisis region the special operations component on duty would be ready to leave within 5 days.