13:27 Jun. 6, 2016
Baltops 16 drills will take place on Hanko peninsula
As part of the international naval exercise Baltops 16, NATO forces will arrive - for the first time ever - in Finland, which is not the Alliance member. It is reported by the Finnish channel Yle.
During three days, from June 6 to June 9, NATO troops will practice landing and fighting operations at the Syndalen army firing range, on the peninsula Hanko.
200 U.S. Marine Corps servicemen, 60 British soldiers, 50 German troops and an Italian reconnaissance platoon will take part in these joint military exercises.
The drills will also feature two warships - U.S. Navy dock landing ship USS Carter Hall and Royal Navy biggest ship HMS Queen.
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Baltops is the largest annual military exercise in the Baltic Sea. Finland has been taking part in the exercise for about twenty years, but it is the first time when the drills are held in the country.
18 NATO partners and allies - including 4,500 military personnel, 50 vessels, 60 flying craft and one submarine - are taking part in Baltops 16. This year marks the first time in the exercise's nearly half a century that Baltops has taken place so far north.