Army of Latvia: strength and armament

The Latvian army is the guarantor of the independence and security of its state. The Armed Forces are a collection of all kinds of troops that ensure the territorial integrity of the country.

army of latvia

History of occurrence

How did the army of Latvia. The history of its creation dates back to the nineteenth year of the twentieth century. At that time, the armed forces had four land divisions, which in turn were divided into four regiments. One third of them were occupied by artillerymen, the rest - infantry. The divisions had the following names: Kurzeme, Vidzeme, Latgale and Zemgalsky. In addition to the basic composition, the army of Latvia in 1940 received support from the Technical Division and the Navy. Almost at the beginning of the history of the formation of troops, Senior Lieutenant Alfred Wallley organized an aviation group.

Armed groups began to formvoluntary basis. The first semblance of the army of the state consisted of several rifle mouths of soldiers - Latvian, German and Russian. But a year after the formation of troops from among the interested, everyone was called to call for service. The officers were headed by former Russian and German military personnel. The commanders were also representatives of the United Kingdom, the United States and Sweden.

In the first two years after the organization, the army ledfight with representatives of the Red Army. After this incident, the situation somewhat calmed down, and the armed forces engaged in peaceful affairs. The prewar army in Latvia did not use its defensive capabilities against other countries for the next twenty years.

The Soviet period

In 1940, the state became one of the SovietThe Socialist Republics. Subsequently, the Latvian armed forces also underwent some changes. They increased the number of the Workers 'and Peasants' Red Army in the form of the twenty-fourth Latvian Rifle Corps.

Now the militarytraining for eighteen months. After this period, the rank and file were added to the reserve. With the advent of Soviet power, the army of Latvia (its strength) reached thirty-one thousand. Of this number, two thousand - it was an officer corps, twenty-seven thousand - soldiers. The armed forces were also replenished with civil servants. Their number was equal to one thousand people.

army of Latvia

When the Great Patriotic War began,the republic was represented in the form of two rifle divisions and a separate anti-aircraft artillery battalion. The cadets of the Riga Infantry School also left for the front.

Time of Independence

Immediately after obtaining the status of an independentThe government signed a law that defined the concepts of "the army of Latvia", "strength" and "armament of its composition." A popular voluntary defense organization was formed, which was called "Zemessardze". Protection of interests, independence and sovereignty has become one of the top priorities. Therefore, the government was actively engaged in the formation of a battle-worthy army.

The state in the nineties actively began to establish international relations. Within the framework of the partnership program with the United States of America, the country participated in all NATO projects.

The innovation was also that the border troopsbecame an isolated unit after their withdrawal from the armed forces. The army of Latvia lost this link, which passed under the control of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the state.

army of latvia history

According to customs reports across the borderwas transported in the period from 1995 to 2000, weapons worth more than eight million lats. But at the same time there is one interesting fact - the supplies for the state are only half of this amount. Although, according to the documents on foreign economic transactions, various small arms were imported into Latvia.


Although the army of Latvia participated in the militaryactions, but not particularly active. Direct aggressive threats from other countries were not observed, so the government sent its people to participate in a variety of missions.

The Latvian military participated in the formation of ISAF forces, which were introduced into Afghanistan. The state provided its soldiers in 2003. Losses cost four citizens of Latvia.

During the war in Iraq, the Latvianthe army was sent in the number of 140 people to the territory of the hostilities. Then the government sent more and more parties of people. During the war in Iraq, there were about a thousand soldiers. Three of them did not return home.

The Latvian army took part in manyformations of NATO. Once the organization has been decided to introduce its forces to stabilize the situation in Kosovo and Metohija, the Latvians decided to join them. For nine years, the authorities sent their citizens to carry out the mission. In total, four hundred and thirty-seven people were at war in Kosovo.

army of latvia 1940

Surveillance systems

To better protect sovereignty government issued a decree on theerection of a station with a radar system. It was supposed to be located in the eastern part of the country. The purpose of the work station is to monitor the airspace of other Baltic countries - Lithuania and Estonia, as well as parts of Russia and Belarus.

A year after the construction of radarstation was launched the work of another object of observation. The long-range radar began to operate in the Audrino Volost. It is called upon to control the Baltic countries.

The influence of NATO

Thanks to cooperation and support fromThe North Atlantic Alliance, the army of Latvia is provided with fairly modern weapons. In 2005, the organization contributed to the delivery of technology of appropriate level and capacity. This was done to ensure that the government at first demand provided its contingent for participation in international missions. And for this, the army must be well armed.

Thanks to the established foreign economic relations, the following are supplied to the country:

  • various types of small arms (pistols, machine guns, assault rifles, grenade launchers, sniper rifles);
  • motor vehicles (armored and unarmored);
  • means of communication;
  • outfit (helmets, body armor);
  • auxiliary machinery (trucks, tow trucks, ambulances).

Voluntary formation of "Zemessardze"

The army of Latvia has a rather interesting structure. The strength of its composition, in addition to the main troops, is also the voluntary forces of territorial defense. They were formed in 1991 and received the name "Zemessardze". This component of the armed forces of the state is quite numerous. Eighteen battalions were counted on her account.

This formation is supported bystate, but it is voluntary because of the fact that there are only half a thousand professional military personnel in its divisions. The remaining ten and a half thousand people are people who joined the formation on their own initiative.

"Zemessardze" is the largest partthe armed forces of Latvia. The chief commander says that people help the state by allocating personal time. But many volunteers have another main place of work. He believes that people are motivated by ideology and love of the Motherland. This idea is supported and the rest of the army of Latvia. Parade on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of the formation took place this year.

army of latvia parade

The tasks of battalions are:

  • elimination of fire consequences;
  • rescue operations;
  • control of public order;
  • security;
  • protection of the land part of Latvia;
  • participation in international missions.

Structure of formation

The management bodies of this organization are based in three cities - Riga, Liepaja and Rezekne. Each has its own strategic meaning:

  1. The district located in Riga is managed by the headquartersfirst command. He leads five battalions. One of them works for security, the other - for infantry. The first provides the army with professional snipers, scouts, medics and signalers.
  2. The district, located in Liepaja, is managed by the headquarterssecond command. He, as well as the Riga District, has four infantry battalions in his subordination. In addition to them, he manages an artillery battalion and battalion, which deals with protecting the territory of the state from weapons of mass destruction.
  3. The district located in Rezekne is managedthe headquarters of the third command. He manages infantry, air defense, engineering and technical and student battalion. In the latter, students from different countries serve.

Organizational structure

Army of Latvia, strength and armament (2015)is quite large for such a small country: 5,100 regular members and about 8,000 volunteers (as part of the national militia). A distinctive feature of the armed forces of the state is a simple structure of subordination. The entire defense system consists of the following units:

  • ground troops;
  • aviation;
  • the navy;
  • National Guard;
  • command centers.

army of latvia number and armament 2015
In case of martial law, the authorities have the rightTo transfer under the control of the armed forces all the structures belonging to the Ministry of Internal Affairs. Including, it's border troops, and civil defense groups.

By geographical location, Latvia is divided intothree counties. If earlier military service was compulsory, then, starting from 2007, one can get into the army only on a contract basis. The entire officer staff consists of former cadets of military lyceums.

Development prospects

The main goal in terms of long-term developmentthe armed forces of the country is to increase the defense capacity in accordance with the requirements of the North Atlantic Alliance. They mean military construction, which should be completed by 2020. The army must be at such a level that it can strengthen its allies in international peacekeeping missions.

Thanks to this project, in 2011,a single headquarters, which organizes the work of its units and is responsible for cooperation with NATO formations. Its tasks are the development of strategic plans, coordination of actions, command of internal troops, training of the staff.

On service in the armed forces of Latvia is five thousand seven hundred people.

armed forces of latvia

Ground troops

On this kind of troops the army of Latvia is kept. Photos speak of the powerful training of soldiers and good equipment. The ground forces consist of two divisions: a motorized infantry brigade and a detachment of special purpose.

Armed land forces with small arms(automatic rifles, pistols, grenade launchers) mainly American and German production. On the basis of this kind of troops there are several tanks, armored personnel carriers and anti-aircraft guns.

The Air Force

The military aviation of Latvia can solve a circle of problems independently or accompany and cover the land forces or the navy.

The military air division of the army consists ofSquadron, Air Defense Division and airspace control squadron. The first component includes aircraft and helicopter bureaus and maintenance of aircraft. The second component deals with the defeat of goals that are at close range. It includes three batteries of anti-aircraft defense and a supply platoon. The third component controls the link, the guard division, the radar stations. At her disposal are not only aircraft and helicopters, but also anti-aircraft guns.

In the long term, it is planned to carry out a large-scale reconstruction of the airbase infrastructure, the purchase of radar systems with extended range.

Naval Forces

The task of the fleet is to control the activitiesother states, prevention of possible threats, creation of conditions for a safe economic zone, regulation of navigation and fishing. At the moment, the main work of the naval forces is to equip the water area, in particular, the clearance of the Baltic Sea. The naval forces consist of a fleet of warships and a coast guard service.

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