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Estonia to build 600 bunkers to deter possible Russian aggression

Estonia to build 600 bunkers to deter possible Russian aggression

Baltic nations Estonia NATO Russian aggression

The Estonian government has decided to build a defense line of approximately 600 concrete bunkers to repel possible Russian aggression.

Postimees reported on this.

The construction of the defense line will take place on the eastern borders of the state, namely in the Ida-Viru County and in the southeast of Estonia, with some fortifications being built near Lake Peipsi.

At a meeting in Riga, the Baltic defense ministers agreed that Latvia and Lithuania would also create a similar defense zone on the eastern border. For NATO, Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania are one operational area.

According to Kaido Tiitus, advisor to the Vice Chancellor of the Ministry of Defense, physical protection facilities at the border are needed to protect Estonian territory from the first meter if necessary.

“Russia is and will remain the biggest threat to Estonia’s security. The war in Ukraine has reduced Russia’s offensive power, but according to various estimates, it is ready to regain it within two to three years. We must be prepared and make the price of an attack on Estonia as high as possible for Russia,” Tiitus said.

He added that the defense facilities are needed in case of a possible attack to delay the enemy at the border and give the allies time to come to the rescue.

The bunkers will protect the military from enemy fire and shell fragments. A condition for the strength of the bunker being built is that it must withstand a direct hit from 152-mm shells.

Each bunker is designed for ten people. The size of the bunker is 30-35 square meters, and it is designed so that the unit can withstand the enemy for a longer period of time. The bunkers must also be equipped with a sleeping area.

The Estonian Defense Forces will prepare dragon’s teeth, barbed wire, and mines that will be stored near the defense lines.

The construction of the bunkers requires agreements with landowners and cooperation with local communities. The Ministry of Defense is expected to start communicating with local residents about the establishment of the centers in the coming weeks.

The Ministry of Defense plans to allow landowners to use the bunkers as utility rooms after signing a contract. Installation of the bunkers will begin in the first half of next year.

Each bunker will be assigned a unit that will be responsible for it, but the bunkers will not have permanent security. The construction of the bunkers is expected to cost about €60 million.

It is worth noting that the capacity of the bunkers exceeds the size of the Estonian Defense Forces in peacetime, and mobilization is required to fully man this defense line.

Therefore, most likely, this number of bunkers is being built with a view to the contingent of NATO member states in the Baltic region.

Baltic nations Estonia NATO Russian aggression