WIESBADEN, Germany (June 1, 2015) -- Approximately 6,000 personnel from 13 countries will participate in the U.S. Army Europe, or USAEUR,-led joint multinational Exercise Saber Strike 15, which will take place in Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland, June 8-19.

Saber Strike is a long-standing U.S. Army Europe-led cooperative training exercise conducted annually since 2010. The aim of the exercise is to improve the cooperation and capabilities of the participating nations for future contingency operations.

This year's exercise objectives facilitate cooperation amongst Canada, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovenia, the United Kingdom and the United States.

The exercise trains participants on command and control as well as interoperability with regional partners. The exercise will consist of field and situational training exercises conducted in Latvia, Lithuania and Poland, joint tactical air controller training in Estonia, and a command post exercise conducted in Lithuania.

Lithuania, the host nation for this year's exercise, will hold the opening ceremony at Nemencine Training Area, June 8, with the exercise co-director, Lithuanian land forces Commander Maj. Gen Almantas Leika, presiding.

Saber Strike 15 will be the national level certification for the Baltic Battalion to prepare for the NATO Response Force certification Exercise Trident Juncture, which will be held in fall 2015. The Baltic Battalion is a joint contribution of Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia to NATO.

Saber Strike 15 also features the integration of U.S. close air support with partner nation ground forces and a demonstration of U.S. air deployment of forces and equipment. All activities will feature joint, multinational training among the participating nations.

Units from USAEUR include the headquarters' joint multinational simulation center, observer coach trainers from the Joint Multinational Readiness Center, 5th Signal Command, 21st Theater Sustainment Command, 18th Engineer Brigade, 173rd Airborne Brigade and 234th Engineer Detachment.

The Pennsylvania Army National is participating in both the command post exercise with a command and control element and the field training exercise with a platoon of light infantry. The Michigan Army National Guard is participating in the situational training and field training exercise with its unmanned aerial systems team.

For U.S. Air Forces in Europe, the 435th Contingency Response Group, 435th Air-Ground Operations Wing, and the 37th Airlift Wing will participate.

U.S. Air Force Global Strike Command will provide B-52 aircraft to participate in air operations training throughout Saber Strike and Baltic operation exercises.

Units participating from the U.S. Air National Guard are the Michigan Army National Guard, with KC-135s and joint tactical air controllers, Pennsylvania Army National Guard, with KC-135s, and Maryland Army National Guard with A-10s.

---

About us: U.S. Army Europe is uniquely positioned in its 51 country area of responsibility to advance American strategic interests in Europe and Eurasia. The relationships we build during more than 1,000 theater security cooperation events in more than 40 countries each year lead directly to support for multinational contingency operations around the world, strengthen regional partnerships and enhance global security.