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Hungarian Defence Forces conduct complex exercise to strengthen country defence

Text: Vendel Teszler | Photo: Tünde Rácz, Sztaniszláv Horváth, Gábor Kormány |  13:06 November 9, 2023

Speaking in the program “Napi Aktuális” of Hungarian television channel Hír TV on the day of starting the multinational countrywide Exercise Adaptive Hussars 2023, General Dr. Gábor Böröndi, Chief of the HDF General Staff said that during this exercise – the largest one in Hungary over the past 30 years – the Hungarian Defence Forces are mobilizing their reserve as well. In accordance with NATO plans, they are training for military operations that involve Alliance forces stationed in Hungary, and are cooperating with Hungarian civil administration to test its capabilities and level of preparedness.


The Chief of the HDF General Staff highlighted the reserve personnel’s role, emphasizing that there are 570 reservists among the 4500 Hungarian troops participating in the exercise. Another important element of Exercise Adaptive Hussars 2023 is the cooperation with local organs of public administration with the aim of assessing the defence capability of Hungary and developing it further if necessary.

Speaking about the conduct of the exercise, General Dr. Gábor Böröndi mentioned, by way of example, the north-eastern counties, where a state of danger has been declared based on the government order, and now, on the basis of this, the Hungarian Defence Forces can use economic-financial services in the region. “For example, we are going to contact a capital and county government commissioner, and request him to accommodate 400 troops. He issues an order to assign a building for this purpose, a state-owned property to be used by the HDF. It is here that we are going to inprocess, equip and train the reservists, and then assign the called-up personnel guard and security duties to protect critical infrastructure” – this was one of the possible scenarios mentioned by General Böröndi in the television program.


The Chief of the HDF General Staff also said that during the military maneuvers, a live fire exercise will also be held with PzH 2000HU self-propelled howitzers – one of the new assets of the Hungarian Defence Forces – firing at a distance of more than 20 kilometers. The personnel equipped with these new assets will be tasked with carrying out live fire missions, so that the military leaders can “see” how the hardware, the soldiers’ skill levels and the command group have matured together.

In connection with NATO, the general noted that the North Atlantic Treaty Organization has recently made a decision to reinforce its eastern flank, from the northern Baltic states right down to the south, to Bulgaria. Hungary is also part of this line, and, as a deterrent force, Croatian, Turkish and Italian soldiers, a total of 380 personnel are also staying in Hungary as part of a multinational enhanced Vigilance Activity Battle Group (eVA BG HUN). In the framework of Exercise Adaptive Hussars 2023, the forces of this battle group will be concentrated and redeployed to the north-eastern part of the country; there, the Italians, for example, will perform parachute jumps in the vicinity of Nyíregyháza.


Speaking in the evening program, General Dr. Gábor Böröndi also talked about the current hybrid threat, noting that as a NATO member state, besides the threats posed by the Russo-Ukrainian War, Hungary’s armed forces must be training for conducting counterterrorism operations as well.

“Of course, the Hungarian Defence Forces are monitoring the situation at our national borders”, said General Dr. Böröndi, adding that the preparation for potential border incidents is part of the soldiers’ training.

At the end of the television program, the Chief of the HDF General Staff said that the main objectives of Exercise Adaptive Hussars 2023 are to reveal “what works well and what should be improved”, and then, after analyzing the lessons learned, to make the Hungarian Defence Forces even better and more efficient in all respects.

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