Almost 130 British soldiers arrived at Estonia's Armari military base on Friday evening (March 17)as part of a NATO deterrent against Russia.Saira Jaffer reports.
British soldiers arriving in Estonia as part of a NATO mission to deter neighbouring Russia. Almost 130 troops, landing at the Armari military base 25 miles south-west of the capital, Tallinn, late on Friday. The first, of 800 to come, are part of a strategy agreed by NATO leaders last July,in a move to reassure member states, once part of the Soviet bloc, now alarmed by Russia's seizure of Crimea from Ukraine. (SOUNDBITE) (English) ESTONIAN MINISTER OF DEFENCE, MARGUS TSAHKNA, SAYING: "We are welcoming the first part of the British troops to Estonia and it is very important that we understand it's not a question about protecting Estonia. It's a question about protecting NATO and EU Eastern border. We know as well that Russia acting aggressively. Russia is still violating international law and welcoming NATO troops to Baltic region and Poland is a result of the Warsaw NATO meeting decision". NATO planning to move around 4,000 troops into northeastern Europe on a rotational basis. Focusing on Poland and the Baltic states that fear Moscow could destablize them. (SOUNDBITE) (English) UK ARMY CAPTAIN, GAVIN DUNLOP, SAYING: "We're obviously here is to reassure our NATO allies, train in a multinational battle group along with the Danish, the French and obviously underneath an Estonian brigade as well and get some real good multinational training and so that as NATO as whole are much better capability." Russia denying any wrongdoing describing NATO's behaviour as aggressive and threatening.