Sweden leads multinational peace support operation exercise

Sweden will once again lead a multinational peace support operation exercise, which is to take place on 3 –14 November. The exercise, nicknamed VIKING 08, has been organised to train civilian officials, military commanders and staff members to plan for actions and to handle difficult situations during international peace support operations.

The exercise VIKING is computer-assisted with data distributed among all sites. Photo: Andreas Karlsson/Försvarsmakten

Serving at 13 different headquarters deployed in seven different European countries, 2000 civilian officials and military officers will participate. Sweden is on top of the gaming that will mainly take place at the Lifeguard Regiment outside Stockholm.

“We are focusing on the co-operation and co-ordination of all appropriate functions occurring in the theatre of a peace support operation. In an operation, these functions are generally civilian in the form of humanitarian aid and shelter for refugees and military in the form of providing security for the population,” says Exercise Director Brig Gen Jan-G Isberg.

Most European countries are represented in the exercise and the 13 headquarters deployed in the fictitious war-affected region mirror several United Nations offices, EU Battle Group headquarters and various NATO headquarters. The exercise is computer-assisted with data distributed among all sites. In addition, it is being conducted in the spirit of Partnership for Peace. The scenario is realistic in that it deploys United Nations forces, aid organisations, UN civilian police and military forces.

“We expect to significantly improve the general understanding of international peace support operations. We also hope to improve how well we meet the needs for a politically/diplomatically, militarily and economically integrated solution and the need for information campaign support. We also expect to develop the staff and leadership skills of the participants,” says Exercise Director Brig Gen Jan-G Isberg.