Last year, the Swedish government decided that the Swedish Armed Forces is to contribute instructors to the UK training mission Interflex. Sweden is one of many countries that assist with the training effort. The training takes place at a number of UK training facilities, where the Ukrainian recruits receive basic military training to ensure that they are as prepared as possible to be able to defend their country.
As of the summer of 2023, the National Home Guard has taken over the task from the army and will be manning several bouts of training. Brigadier General Laura Swaan Wrede, chief of the National Home Guard, is incredibly proud of how the Home Guard instructors have managed the task.
“The National Home Guard has historically only operated on Swedish territory, and what we see now is a paradigm shift. The National Home Guard may have to change and be ready to take on other tasks in the future".
The extensive support that Sweden is giving to Ukraine is a strain on the Swedish Armed Forces, and also has some effects on other tasks. Through their contribution to Interflex, the National Home Guard can relieve other service branches. National Home Guard instructors are used to quickly train individuals that lack previous military experience.
“To me it felt natural to apply and to be directly involved in training Ukrainian recruits, to give them the competences and skills that they need in order to go from being a civilian to a soldier that is ready to fight, defend their country, and to increase their chances of surviving the war and pushing the enemy out”, says Interflex 2023 Deputy Platoon Commander.