Russia is on continuous military high alert and has deployed several Iskander nuclear-capable missile systems on a permanent basis in the neighbourhood of Lithuania at Kaliningrad, Lithuanian President has said.
According to the Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaitė, the military exercise “Zapad 2017” had clearly demonstrated that Russia’s hostility and aggressive policy in relation to the West was ongoing. Aggressive cyber-attacks, fake news and other tools of hybrid warfare pose a huge threat to Lithuanian security as well as to the security of the entire continent, the Press Service of the President of Lithuania said in a statement Monday.
According to the President, only a further reinforcement of NATO and the elimination of the current disproportion between Russia-posed threats and NATO’s defense capabilities enable us to counter the threats. This necessitates the reform of NATO aimed at developing a strategy for the reinforcement of the region, preventing a possible military isolation of the region and ensuring rapid arrival of the allied forces to the Baltic countries if needed. It is also necessary to enhance decision-making at NATO, develop regional air defense and implement the reform of NATO’s headquarters.
President Dalia Grybauskaitė, Croatia’s Deputy Prime Minister and Defense Minister Damir Krstičević, Dutch Minister of Defense Ank Bijleveld, German State Secretary to the Federal Minister for Defense Marcus Grübel and NATO's Deputy Secretary General Rose Gottemoeller discussed the strengthening of NATO’s defense and security at the Great Lithuanian Hetman Jonušas Radvila Training Regiment in Rukla.
The meeting marked the first anniversary of the deployment of NATO’s forward presence battalion in Lithuania. Presently, the core of the battalion is comprised of German, Dutch, French, Croatian and Norwegian troops.