Lithuanian Chief of Defence met with his Latvian counterpart

Lithuanian Chief of Defence met with his Latvian counterpart

Minister of National Defence Arvydas Anušauskas and Chief of Defence of Lithuania Lt Gen Valdemaras Rupšys met with Chief of Defence of Latvia Lieutenant General Leonīds Kalniņš visiting Vilnius December 8–9. After the meeting at the Ministry of National Defence the guest continued to Druskininkai Border crossing point at Varėna Frontier District to familiarize with the current situation on the Lithuanian border and the border area surveillance system.

“The hybrid attack at our borders have revealed the importance of Baltic unity. We are grateful to Latvia for the support in the face of the crisis. And we are not ruling out yet that the migration pressure at the border is designed as a cover for Russian actions to be taken against Ukraine, therefore we need to joint efforts to find ways to increase the assistance to Ukraine,” Minister of National Defence A. Anušauskas said at the meeting with the Latvian Chief of Defence.

The Lithuanian and Latvian Chiefs of Defence had a meeting over the regional security situation and prospects of further defence cooperation. Generals were weighing the possibilities to strengthen the cooperation between the respective countries’ Land Forces, as well as the Special Operations Forces.

“The security situation and new challenges that our militaries are faced with only underline the importance of a conversation and mutually developed solutions. The interaction and interoperability of our forces are a priority when it comes to both levels, tactical and operational. We have dedicated a significant part of the meeting to projects, priorities and joint training events. We have agreed to share military expertise in acquisitions of new systems and equipment,” said Chief of Defence Lt Gen V. Rupšys.

During the visit, the Lithuanian and Latvian Chiefs of Defence with a delegation also visited the Lithuanian Special Operations Forces where bilateral cooperation with Latvia was addressed, activity of the 3B SOF Intelligence Fusion Cell was presented, regional defence, as well as the ongoing cooperation in the NATO Response Force, was discussed

Command Sergeant Majors of the Lithuanian and the Latvian Armed Forces also met bilaterally during the visit. Sgt Maj Remigijus Katinas and Sgt Maj Edgars Joksts-Bogdanovs discussed NCO training, cooperation opportunities in NACO military training and qualification improvement organization.

The military cooperation between Lithuania and Latvia is crucial for regional security. It is intensely developed in defence area in NATO, EU, and Baltic frameworks. The Baltic militaries cooperate most intensely in the NATO Baltic Air Policing Mission, airspace surveillance, Navy, military qualification improvement and military training contexts.

The areas of most intense cooperation are the NATO Baltic Air Policing Mission, service-level cooperation, and joint training events. Trilateral and bilateral projects, such as the Air Surveillance Network and Control System BALTNET, Baltic Naval Squadron BALTRON, Baltic Defence College, joint Baltic military unit BALTFOR have been ongoing for years. The Baltic countries are also synchronizing capabilities and armed defence plans and organizing joint exercises and training, seminars, at armed forces and separate service levels.

Spokesperson for the Chief of Defence of Lithuania Capt. Rūta Montvilė

+370 5 278 5091, +370 682 25359, ruta.montvile@mil.lt