Text size:

​Jüri Ratas: The activities of the Defence League are developing and continue to maintain the protection of the people.

Prime Minister and Commander of the EDL
Photo: Kristjan Prii
Prime Minister Jüri Ratas visited the General Staff of the Defence League on Tuesday, April 17th, where Major General Meelis Kiili, the Commander of the Defence League gave him overviews of the organization’s development plans as well as on the exercise SIIL 2018 planned in the first part of May.
According to the Prime Minister, the protection of the Estonia is high among the people, which is confirmed by the Defence League as a voluntary organization in Estonia’s national defence and the high level of willingness of Estonian men and women to participate in military exercises. „I am very pleased to confirm that in the year that the Defence League celebrates its centenary along side the Republic of Estonia, that in the near future both the Defence League budget and the salaries of the members of the Defence League will increase as will the Social Security system of the Defence League,“ said Ratas, referring to the Amendment Act to the Law on the National Defence League adopted by Parliament on April 11, 2018.

He expressed hope that it would help the Defence League to better implement its development plan and approach the goal set by the National Defence Development Plan for 2017-2026 of having an EDL membership of 30,000 individuals.

Major General Meelis Kiili, Commander of the Defence League said that the grand exercise SIIL is a worthy event during the 100 anniversary of the Defence League, which means that to the Defence League members themselves, our society, allies and partners as well as potential enemies we are giving a clear message that we take the defence of our country very seriously.

 „This type of an operation of a broad-based national defence system has never been implemented so widely in Estonia. It is very important that we can be able to change our plans by means of our determined deterrence," said General Kiili. „ We are expecting all of the Defence League members to participate in the exercise along with members of the Defence Forces, the police, our allies and others: every spine counts!“

The exercise SIIL 2018 occurring from 2-14 of May is the most extensive exercise to take place in re-independent Estonia, bringing together more than 15,000 members of the Defence Forces, Defence League, Police and Rescue workers as well as our allies and partners from 15 countries.