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Lithuanian Armed Forces prepares for Exercise Defender 2020


On May 16 the Lithuanian Armed Forces Defence Staff, Lithuanian Land Force Staff, and the 1st Territorial Unit of the National Defence Volunteer Force held a meeting with representatives of Marijampolė municipality to present Exercise Defender 2020 organised by the United States of America in Lithuania next year.


The Lithuanian Armed Forces representatives briefed the representatives of Marijampolė municipality on the character of the planned exercise, discussed exercise sites outside of the military training area, challenges arising from that, and possibilities to minimise them. Lithuanian officers also pointed out the importance of locations selected for the Exercise and the benefit it would have for strengthening national security.


Exercise Defender 2020 will be conducted by the U.S. European Command to demonstrate the ability of the United States to deploy a division at no notice to the theatre of operations in Europe. It will be the largest military exercise in 20 years testing military echelons larger than a brigade in operational level military action.


The Lithuanian Armed Forces supports the Exercise, plans to take part in it alongside other NATO allies and to develop our own division-level headquarters capability at the Exercise. The Lithuanian Armed Forces is assisting in ensuring a proper preparations, Host National Support, and seamless organisation of the Exercise on the territory of Lithuania.


Exercise Baltic Defender 2020 will start in April next year and will run until the end of May. The region of Marijampolė is next to the Suwalki Corridor – the territory called “the Achilles’ heel” of NATO, therefore the military training actions spanning as much as 21 thousand hectares and involving nearly 3 thousand military personnel of Lithuania and our allies have been planned in the area.


POC: PAO for the Defence Staff of the Lithuanian Armed Forces Maj Tomas Balkus

+370 5 219 6401, +370 686 28035, [email protected]


Photo credits: Lithuanian Armed Forces

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