As the United Kingdom-led Joint Expeditionary Force (JEF) steps up involvement in the Baltic region and interoperability with NATO capabilities, the Standing Joint Force HQ (SJFHQ) is for the first time deployed in Lithuania on May 2 through 31 for an international command post exercise. The event will put to test and enhance communications channels between Lithuania, Latvia and the Joint Force Headquarters (SJFHQ) in Northwood, UK, so that the response to arising threats is quick and joint planning, as well as a united response to hybrid actions in the Baltic Sea region, the High North and the North Atlantic Region is ensured.
The JEF is a high-readiness, roughly 10-thousand strong multinational unit established in 2015 and formed by land, maritime and air capabilities contributed by the ten European partner nations (Denmark, Estonia, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Finland, the UK). The capability is tailored to respond to emergencies in Europe and beyond, from humanitarian assistance to deterrence and combat actions on UN, EU or NATO mandate. Lithuania currently has accompany-sized unit of the King Mindaugas Hussar Battalion of the Mechanized Infantry Brigade Iron Wolf assigned to the JEF. The staff officer Lithuania has also delegated serves at the Joint Force Headquarters (SJFHQ) in Northwood, UK, since early 2016.