TALLINN – The 2022 edition of the Annual Baltic Conference on Defense will be held in Tallinn on Wednesday, with the focus on Russia's war against Ukraine and its consequences for the Baltic Sea countries.
The participants in the conference include Hanno Pevkur, minister of defense of Estonia; Oleksii Reznikov, minister of defense of Ukraine, who will make a video address; Thomas Hitschler, parliamentary secretary of the Federal Ministry of Defense of Germany; Angus Lapsley, NATO assistant secretary general; Hennadii Shapovalov, brigadier general of the armed forces of Ukraine; and Rachel Ellehuus, senior civilian representative of the US secretary of defense in Europe and defense advisor to the US mission to NATO.
On the eve of the conference, Prime Minister of Estonia Kaja Kallas will be hosting an event to welcome the representatives of NATO, allies and cooperation partners and experts in defense and security policy.
"The Russian war in Ukraine has many consequences, the most important of which is, of course, the tragedy faced by millions of Ukrainians. At the same time, many Europeans have realized that they must prepare for Russian military aggression in their home countries. NATO has taken swift decisions to strengthen its deterrence and defense posture and to reassure its eastern members," said conference director Martin Hurt of the International Center for Defense and Security (ICDS).
Hurt said that on top of that, the United States has resumed its strong leadership in ensuring European security, Germany is experiencing a Zeitenwende with an increase in defense spending, and Finland and Sweden have moved promptly to closely align themselves with NATO.
"These rapid changes have made it necessary to review what we have learned so far and assess the long-term consequences that Russia's military activities have on our security," he said.
A total of 200 speakers and guests have been invited to the Annual Baltic Conference on Defense 2022, titled "Lessons for the Baltic Sea Region from the War in Ukraine."
The conference is organized by the ICDS and the Ministry of Defense of Estonia, in cooperation with the Konrad Adenauer Foundation and the Norwegian technology company Kongsberg Defense & Aerospace. The conference is supported by MBDA, EuroSpike, Nammo, Nexter Group and BAE Systems.