TALLINN - German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier has assured the Baltic NATO partners Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania of Germany's assistance at a visit to the Amari airbase in Estonia on Wednesday.
"NATO is ready to defend every square inch of its alliance territory," Steinmeier said. "We stand by the side of the Baltic states and we assure our protection. Germany can also be relied on in this respect."
Together with the United States and Britain, Germany is now the largest troop contributor on the military alliance NATO's eastern flank, he said.
Steinmeier was in Amari, 40 kilometers south-west of the capital Tallinn, to find out about his country's joint mission with Britain to safeguard the airspace over the three Baltic republics.
"I am also here to express my heartfelt thanks to the soldiers for the mission they are performing," the president emphasized.
The German president is in Estonia on a two-day working visit on Wednesday and Thursday. He is scheduled to meet with Estonian President Alar Karis and Prime Minister Kaja Kallas.