More than 260 members of staff from the NATO Headquarters Multinational Division North (MND N), supported by the headquarters Command Support Battalion, and staff from other NATO and national headquarters, in total almost 600 troops from regional NATO countries, were active as the MND N launched exercise Knight Lavard 2022 in Adaži Military base near Riga, Latvia in April. It was another important step towards the Division’s Headquarters taking up its role as a key NATO headquarters in Northeastern Europe.
This important exercise trained the operational tasks, coordination and logistic procedures of NATO’s most north-eastern division-level command. MND N is organized and manned to be able to scale up and undertake a wide range of NATO tasks in the Baltic area. From peacetime coordination and training to full scale warfighting. This means that the headquarters has a basic staff located in Latvia and Denmark during peacetime but can be boosted to more than double that size on very short notice if NATO is threatened or attacked in the region.
Exercise Knight Lavard 2022 trained headquarters staff in a number of scenarios at divisional level including a full scale military attack on NATO countries in the Baltic area. A situation where Headquarters Multinational Division North will play a major role in organizing and executing NATO military operations. The exercise took MND N staff through a detailed scenario where NATO forces move in to defend the member states Latvia and Estonia and expel an aggressor from NATO territory.
Extensive knowledge of the terrain, the local forces and potential axis of attack on NATO were studied in detail and attacking forces repulsed from NATO territory and punished severely in the process. Exercise Knight Lavard 22 was that first of a number of major exercises and activities in an important year for the MND N. Later this spring the headquarters will deploy to Estonia in order to conduct exercise Knight Legion 22 and during the autumn several other exercises will refine the headquarters staff. The tasks of Headquarters Multinational Division North will continue to range from facilitating training and exercises in the region over coordination and all the way to full scale combat if the Baltic countries are threatened or attacked.