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  Estonian intelligence chief warns of provocations targeting NATO soldiers (1)

2017 02 22
Russia will target British troops to be deployed to Estonia in order to discredit the NATO mission to reinforce its eastern flank, Estonian intelligence chief Mikk Marran told British daily The Times in an interview.
Honeytraps, staged pub brawls — designed to make British troops look like thugs — and subversive efforts to penetrate social media accounts to find information for blackmail purposes are expected to be attempted by "the opposite team," Marran, director general of the Estonian Information Board (EIB) said.
The Estonian intelligence chief said that Estonian and British officials have been discussing the threat for months in order to prepare the 800 British personnel bound for Estonia to avoid Cold War-style spy games. The deployment will provide a perfect opportunity for Moscow to create a false impression of Western aggression by spreading fake news stories.
"We are seeing some of it already," Marran said. "Some degree of noise along the lines of 'These troops are not welcome by the local population.'
"There will be 800 young British soldiers," he continued. "People will be traveling from their bases to the cities. Probably they [will] do some pub-hopping. We cannot exclude some fights that might be triggered by the opposite team, as we call it in Estonia — for example, traditional honeytraps and so forth. 

Marran said that cyber-espionage, disinformation campaigns and blackmailing on the bases of stolen data may all be used, for example. "They have a huge toolbox," he warned. 

Precedent elsewhere in the Baltics

Last year, the British Army investigated claims that two British soldiers in Latvia were involved in a brawl as part of a plot by Russia to smear U.K. soldiers. The brawl with a group of locals was filmed by a crew linked to a media outlet sympathetic to Russia.
Asked about that incident, Marran commented, "Certainly it had some Russian background to it." 

In Lithuania, some media outlets picked up a false news story last week alleging that soldiers of the German contingent currently deployed there had raped an underage girl.
The U.K. troops to be deployed to Estonia will be working alongside 300 French soldiers, to be replaced by Danes later in the year, in one of four battalions to be deployed to the Baltic region. The battalions, consisting of a total of 4,000 troops, will be spread across the three Baltic states and Poland beginning next month.
The NATO contingent to be deployed to Estonia will be stationed in Tapa and will act in conjunction with Estonia's 1st Infantry Brigade. The U.K. will have 800 personnel with Warrior infantry fighting vehicles (IFVs), Challenger 2 tanks and reconnaissance drones stationed in Estonia as part of the contingent. 

Editor: Aili Vahtla 

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Ukraine has filed a lawsuit against Russia in the International Court of Justice for terrorism and racism (41)

2017 01 19

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine filed a lawsuit in the UN International Court of Justice against Russia within the framework of the International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism and the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination, says the site of the Foreign Minister. This is done on the instructions of the President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko, issued on 16 January.

National Armed Forces (NAF) of Latvia will deploy additional military units in three cities (67)

2017 01 18

For effective complex defence of Latvia, the establishment of a permanent division of the National Armed Forces has started in Latgale, reported the official website of the Ministry of Defence.


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2017 01 17

On 13 January a concert "Together to the victory" was held in Lithuania, where the audience decided to support Ukraine's defence and donated 110 thousand Euros.


Belarus has established a visa-free regime for citizens of 80 countries (2)

2017 01 10

Alexander Lukashenko on 9 January signed a decree № 8 "On the establishment of visa-free entry and exit of foreign nationals." The document establishes visa-free entry to Belarus for a period not exceeding 5 days at the entrance through the checkpoint "National Airport Minsk" for citizens of 80 countries, - reported the press service of the President of Belarus.

The European Parliament approved the recall of visas for citizens of Ukraine and Georgia (3)

2016 12 19


The European Parliament approved the granting of a visa-free regime for short-term trips to the citizens of Ukraine and Georgia, RIA Novosti reported.



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