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Cablegate: Fy10 1206 Funds Request for Estonian Indirect Fire

VZCZCXYZ0024
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHTL #0297 2941419
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 300836Z SEP 09 ZDS
FM AMEMBASSY TALLINN
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 0141
INFO RHMFISS/HQ USEUCOM VAIHINGEN GE
RHMFISS/JOINT STAFF WASHINGTON DC
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHINGTON DC

UNCLAS TALLINN 000297

C O R R E C T E D C O P Y - ADDITION OF PARA 3.

SIPDIS
DEPARTMENT FOR EUR/ACE
DEPARTMENT FOR PM/PPA JOHANNA KNOCH
DEPARTMENT FOR PM/PPA SCOTT KWAK
JCS J5 FOR COL MIETUS
SECDEF FOR LT COL FENTON
EUCOM FOR MAJ KLINGMAN

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: EAID MARR MASS MCAP PREL EN
SUBJECT: FY10 1206 FUNDS REQUEST FOR ESTONIAN INDIRECT FIRE
CAPABILITY ENHANCEMENT NEEDS

REF: STATE 92407

1. Post has submitted a request for 2.01 million USD in 1206
funding to materially increase Estonian indirect fire capabilities
for current and future NATO ISAF and other operations in key
theaters worldwide. The Chief of Mission has approved this
request. Post's Office of Defense Cooperation delivered the
completed submission templates to EUCOM.

2. Estonia faces a critical need for replacement of current 81mm
mortar systems nearing the end of their life cycle. Estonian
forces rely on this equipment in their overseas deployments. The
Estonian military currently has 13.5 percent of its forces deployed


on NATO missions abroad - perhaps the highest level of any NATO
member. The GOE is looking for additional deployment
opportunities, particularly any that would allow their military to
jointly deploy with U.S. forces. Estonia deployed troops to Iraq
from 2003 to 2008 (withdrawing them only after Iraq failed to
negotiate a SOFA), and has participated in KFOR since 1999. The
Estonian military has been supporting Coalition Forces in
Afghanistan since 2002, and currently has two infantry companies
operating without caveats in Helmand Province. Afghanistan is
Estonia's main military and foreign policy priority, and the GOE is

seeking ways to increase its contributions to peace and security.
Continued deployments in support of Coalition Forces are part of
EDF and Estonian MOD policy. Estonia also currently has smaller
contributions in Bosnia, Iraq (NTM-I),the Middle East (UNTSO) and
NRF-13. In using 1206 funds to support the Estonian military, the
USG will significantly enhance this NATO partner's ability to
effectively operate in stability operations abroad and provide a
significant improvement to Estonia's regional defense capabilities.

Moreover, given the Estonian military's intense desire to work with

U.S. forces, providing this support will directly assist in U.S.
operations.

3. Post is not aware of any credible evidence of gross violations
of human rights by the units proposed to receive assistance.

4. ODC Estonia POC for this project is LTC Robert R. Williams at
372-607-7652, rwilliams@san.osd.mil or Williamsrr@state.sgov.gov.
NORDBERG

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