News: Joint NATO-EU visit highlights solidarity and cooperation with visit to Baltic Sea region, 28-Nov-2021

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg is visiting Lithuania and Latvia on Sunday 28 November 2021, accompanied by European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, to show solidarity with NATO Allies and EU Member States in the Baltic Sea region, and to further strengthen cooperation between NATO and the EU.

In Lithuania, the Secretary General met with President Gitanas NausÄ—da and Prime Minister Ingrida Å imonytÄ— on developments on the Lithuanian border and the military build-up of Russia near Ukraine. The secretary general said that while the Lukashenko regime exploits vulnerable people to put pressure on neighboring countries, “no NATO ally is alone.” He said all Allies have expressed solidarity with Lithuania and have provided practical assistance, including through a team of NATO experts recently deployed to Lithuania to share information, analysis and experiences. in the fight against hybrid threats.

Mr. Stoltenberg explained that cooperation between NATO and the European Union is essential to counter this hybrid campaign. “This crisis affects both NATO and the European Union”, he said, adding that “Lithuania is a member of both organizations, so it is important that President von der Leyen and I are here together today. “ He recalled that “NATO and the EU are working together on a range of security issues, including the fight against hybrid threats”, emphasizing that “Today we discussed how we could step up our joint work, including through a new NATO-EU Joint Declaration, as we are stronger and safer when we work together.”

On Russia’s military build-up near Ukraine, Stoltenberg called on Russia to be transparent, reduce tensions and defuse: “NATO stands ready to defend all Allies and we will continue to provide our partner Ukraine with political and practical support.

Secretary General and President Von der Leyen will be in Latvia later today for talks with Prime Minister Krišjānis Kariņš.

NATO foreign ministers will meet in Riga on Tuesday and Wednesday to consult on a wide range of pressing security challenges in the region and beyond.

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