Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania have refused to participate in joint border guard exercises with Russia, according to the Estonian Public Broadcasting (ERR).
© Reuters/Scanpix

Interior Minister Hanno Pevku said the exercise, carried out by the Russian Federation, is coordinated and organized among others by the organizations, which are directly linked to the abduction of Estonian Security Police official Eston Kohver from the Estonian territory.

Police and Border Guard spokesman Martin Luige said that the border guard joint exercise should take place in the period from March to June and according to the description of the exercise, it would have consisted mainly of the exchange of information. In addition to Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania have also refused to participate.

"It is worth noting that Russia uses as the name of the border guard exercise the name of major military exercise Zapad, which raises serious questions about the contents and objectives of the exercise, including propaganda purposes. Given the above, as well as the overall security situation change and the behaviour of the Russian Federation in connection to Ukraine, we do not consider it possible to participate in border guards joint training exercise Zapad 2014, carried out by the Russian Federation," commented Pevkur.

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