The army’s central brigade – which will need to become “motorised” in the near future – will be involved in an exercise in East Belgium from Monday. A thousand soldiers will be preparing for a possible EU operation, a military source revealed on Saturday.
The exercise, called “Quick Lion 18”, will take place in East Belgium from the 4th to the 15th of June. 1,000 Belgian, Austrian and Dutch soldiers will take part, using their (mostly armoured) vehicles.
“Quick Lion 18” will hopefully mean a reinforced multinational infantry battalion can be certified for duty. It will form the backbone of the European Union Battle Group (EUBG). Belgium will be in command during the second semester. In a recent press release the Defence minister revealed this unit will intervene, if needed, all over the world on the EU’s behalf.
The Dutch troops will use Boxer and Fennek armoured vehicles, while the Belgian troops will use different types of vehicles such as AIVs (Armoured Infantry Vehicles), Piranha IIIC 8x8s with 30 and 90mm canons and Dingo II MPPVs (Multi-Purpose Protected Vehicles).
The Defence department says this large-scale exercise was put together and organised with local and regional authorities and police and fire departments. The Walloon Nature and Forest Division was also involved.