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U.S. support to European security will grow in the coming years, Minister of National Defence R. Karoblis says


“After the meetings in the U.S. Congress I am convinced that the U.S. support to Lithuania’s security will increase in the coming years – there is no division in Republican and Democrat opinion on this issue,” said Minister of National Defence Raimundas Karoblis who is on a visit in Washington at the moment.


“A bilateral 5-year cooperation plan between Lithuania and the United States will also be signed in Washington as soon as next week, it will lay out both countries’ key priorities in military cooperation. This is the most concrete and long-term military cooperation with the U.S. plan we have ever had,” Minister R. Karoblis said.


During the meeting with Democrat and Republic leaders in the most relevant committees to national defence Minister R. Karoblis discussed bilateral military cooperation. Minister addressed the most important bilateral cooperation projects with members of the Senate and the House of Representatives.


The Congress will soon start drafting next U.S. defence budget which is expected to include significant support to the Baltic region.


Minister R. Karoblis met with Chairman of the Senate Committee on Armed Services Senator Jim Inhofe and Head of the Congressional Baltic Caucus Senator John Šimkus, and formed high-ranking Pentagon official Elise Slotkin elected to the House of Representatives this year.


“We have agreed to work together on strengthening NATO and the trans-atlantic relations and we were thanked for fulfilling Lithuania’s commitments to the Alliance by allocating 2% of GDP for defence, developing military capabilities and participating in multinational operations,” Minister R. Karoblis said.


Minister also delivered the keynote address at the expert debate on the post-INF Treaty security challenges arranged by The Heritage Foundation.


“The rigorous U.S. reaction to the violations of the Treaty committed by Russia is fully sound, there is no point to have a treaty that one of the parties to it does not comply with,” Minister R. Karoblis stated.


Minister R. Karoblis’s keynote address in full: https://www.heritage.org/arms-control/event/transatlantic-security-after-the-intermediate-range-nuclear-forces-treaty.


Minister also attended events marking the 70th anniversary of NATO and the 15th anniversary of Lithuania’s NATO membership in Washington.


R. Karoblis also visited the Allied Command Transformation in Norfolk and met with its Commander General André Lanata.


Friday Lithuanian Defence Minister is planned to participate in the United Nations Peacekeeping Ministerial Conference in New York.


Minister of National Defence Raimundas Karoblis is conducting a visit to the United States of America on March 26-30.


Photo credits: MoD

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