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Open Spirit 2018 naval drills kick off in Estonia

May 11, 19:49 UTC+3 TALLINN

The drills’ task is to spot, map out and destroy WWI and WWII mines

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© AP Photo/Vadim Ghirda

TALLINN, May 11. /TASS/. International naval drills Open Spirit 2018 have kicked off in Estonia, the Estonian Defense Forces said on Friday.

"About 800 navy sailors will take part in the exercises," it said, adding that the drills are conducted near the islands of Saaremaa, Hiiumaa and Muhu. The drills’ task is to spot, map out and destroy WWI and WWII mines.

Standing NATO Mine Countermeasures Group 1 of five warships, including support ship HNLMS Mercuur (the Netherland), mine-sweepers the Otra (Norway), the Urk (the Netherlands), the Narcis (Belgium), and the Bad Bevensen (Germany) that will take part in the drills arrived on Thursday.

The Open Spirit naval drills are conducted from May 11 through May 25.

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