Lithuania assigned two LITPOLUKRBRIG (joint Lithuanian–Polish–Ukrainian Brigade) officers to the operational headquarters of the European Union Battle Group on standby since mid-January. The officers will carry out standby duties in composition of the operational HQ staff and undergo certification training from 1 January to 30 June, 2023. The Lithuanian Armed Forces also plans to assign units and servicemembers the EU BG on standby regularly in the future thus ensuring cooperation with other EU member states.
EU Battle Groups are a multinational force tailored to respond to developing crises rapidly. It was developed for the needs of humanitarian assistance, preventive and stability missions, including peacekeeping and peace enforcement operations. Two EU BGs are held on standby at a time on the basis of six-month rotations.
Standby periods are preceded by intense training, joint international exercises, ALERT exercises, and the standby period loses little of that intensity as well. Such experience is much needed by Lithuanian troops as they support EU security alongside colleagues from other EU member states.
The EU BGs are typically battalion-sized maneuver units with combat support elements formed by EU member states. One EU BG comprises approx. 1500-2000 troops.
The EU BGs have to remain ready to imminent threats or emergencies at the radius of 6,000 km away from Brussels. All units and troops assigned to the EU BG are kept on standby in their home countries on high alert. If a decision was taken to deploy the BG to an operation, it would have to be ready to leave in 5–10 days and to remain effective in the area of operation for 30 to 120 days. The BGs are formed specifically to be capable of a rapid re-deployment and different types of operations in a range of climatic conditions.