Cypriot Defence Minister Savvas Angelides got up close and personal with special commandos during their winter training high up in the snowy mountains.
According to the Cyprus News Agency, Angelides paid a visit to a winter survival training session in the Troodos mountain range where conscripts as well as non-commissioned officers took part in exercises for surviving in snow while carrying out dangerous missions.
In a promotional video posted on YouTube by the Defence Ministry, members of a special operations force were shown skiing in foggy conditions with full gear, building igloos, and carrying out special reconnaissance missions.
The commandos also got up close and personal with Angelides, who is often described as a “hands-on minister” while the video showed him taking a few shots with a snow gun suitable for mobile use.
The training takes place both in daytime as well as in the evening, giving Cypriot commandos an opportunity to train in harsh weather conditions, including low temperatures, while carrying dangerous missions.
A commando unit, typically a small elite group, specializes in assault or unconventional warfare, often called to carry out difficult reconnaissance missions behind enemy lines.
The defence minister, who made headlines two years ago when he announced big reforms for army reserves in Cypriot National Guard, has vowed to modernize the military amid criticism of questionable spending.
Angelides also requested a study on a new evaluation system for commissioned officers, aiming to promote the best among the best.