The world clearly understands that the main threats to transatlantic security in the region are the militarization of the Kaliningrad region of the Russian Federation, the large-scale exercises "Zapad-2017" planned for autumn, and the Belarusian nuclear power plant in Astravyets that has turned into a geopolitical weapon, as stated by the President of Lithuania Dalia Grybauskaite during her annual report to the Seimas, Delfi news agency reports.
"The world that defends democracy today fully understands that the main threats to transatlantic security are accumulating namely in our region: the militarization of the Kaliningrad region, the ‘Zapad (West)’ exercises that carry an aggressive and offensive character, and BelAES in Astravyets, which is becoming a geopolitical weapon," the president said.
She also noted that this year, Lithuania received "historical support" from NATO allies when they deployed a battalion that included military from seven states, the United States among them.
At the same time she added that, despite the existing guarantees, it is necessary to strive to accelerate the adoption of decisions in NATO, to form even more solid defensive plans, and to have a common air defense system.
Grybauskaite stressed that Lithuania itself contributes to security, being a strategic partner of Ukraine and Georgia, and contributes to the fight against the migration crisis by actively participating in the "global antiterrorist coalition".
She called for greater cooperation among the European countries, which "can outweigh the instability and tensions prevailing in the world", and membership in the EU, in her opinion, is "a guarantee that ensures long-term peace, stability and prosperity."
"But Europe will not protect us from political shortsightedness: we must clean ourselves of historical influences and increase civil immunity," the Lithuanian leader said while presenting the report.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Belarus summoned the Lithuanian Ambassador after Grybauskaite’s statements in an interview with LRT TV channel. The President of Lithuania then called Belarus "a threat" to the Baltic States and Poland.