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NATO has to respond quickly and to all types of threats, Minister R. Karoblis says


“The revised NATO Command Structure has to reflect the changed security situation in Europe: the Alliance has to be capable of a swift and robust response and of countering both, conventional and hybrid threats,” Minister of National Defence Raimundas Karoblis said on November 8 at the NATO Defence Ministers meeting in Brussels. The main session of the meeting addressed the revision of the NATO Command Structure among other issues.


At the meeting sessions the Ministers agreed to the NATO Command Structure revision guidelines which pave the way for further course of the revision. The most recent adaptation of the NATO Command Structure took place in 2011, however, the shifts in the security situation that have taken place since then, especially the Russian aggression in Ukraine, led NATO to taking on a new adaptation.


“The strength of NATO is its ability to adapt to counter new challenges as the security situation changes,” R. Karoblis underscored. The Minister also stressed in his remarks that the command structure resulting from the adaptation should strengthen the security of NATO allies through filing the gaps in the structure.


Final decisions regarding the NATO Command Structure will be made at the NATO Summit of 2018.


In Brussels, the Defence Ministers also underscored the necessity to put into practice all the decisions taken in Warsaw for strengthening the defensive and deterrence posture of the Alliance. Their implementation include such factors as air and maritime support for the NATO enhanced Forward Presence Battalion deployed to the Baltics and Poland, faster decision-making, as well as NATO reinforcement. The Ministers also agreed on the particular importance of maximally simplifying force mobility in Europe given the current security situation, it would enable allies to respond operatively to provide military support in case of a crisis. It was agreed to continue the work by removing administrative, legal and physical barriers to force movement among European NATO allies.


The Ministers also agreed on the implementation of measures to strengthen the response to the threats to the south of the Alliance.


In the margins of the NATO Defence Ministers meeting on Wednesday R.Karoblis also met with heads of defence of the United Kingdom, United States, Canada and Poland, discussed joint support of the “”Ukrainian five” to Ukraine. “Our aim is to assist Ukraine on its reform, therefore we have to support the efforts at political level regarding the implementation of the reform,” R. Karoblis said. The United Kingdom, United States, Canada, Poland, and Lithuania coordinate efforts in rendering support to Ukraine’s defence as the so-called “Ukrainian five”.


On Thursday the NATO Defence Ministers will address the situation in Afghanistan, strengthening the Resolute Support Mission,, NATO efforts in other regions, including Iraq. Lithuania has increased significantly its contribution to the fight against terrorism and intends to maintain that level. Minister R.Karoblis is also planned to meet I with the German and the Polish Defence Ministers and the Defence Secretary of Luxembourg to discuss cooperation opportunities in cyber defence and other relevant bilateral issues.


Photo credits: NATO


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