Grybauskaite: Security of Baltic region common interest to Lithuania and the U.S.

  • 2015-06-29
  • From wire reports and George East, VILNIUS

On June 29, 2015, Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaite met John Boener, the Speaker of the United States’ House Of Representatives, to discuss security issues in Lithuania and the Baltic Region, plus cooperation between Lithuania and the U.S. on economic and energy matters. 

“The United States continues to be a reliable partner of Lithuania,” said Grybauskaite. “We well know the strength of its moral convictions - the U.S. did not recognise the Soviet occupation of the Baltic States for the entire fifty year period. 

“Today, when our region's security faces a real threat, the United States gives us both help and support. 

“Such transatlantic unity is the only response to the increasingly growing aggression," she concluded.

On June 23, 2015, the United States confirmed it will deploy military equipment in the Baltic States, beginning as early as the end of the year. 

In March 2015, it also decided to allocate $1 billion USD in defence funding to reinforce the region's security. 

Grybauskaite described economic relations with the U.S. as a matter of great importance, and stated Lithuania is one of the staunchest supporters of the free trade agreement between the EU and the U.S.

She added as many as 79 percent of Lithuanians living within the country’s borders support the agreement.

According Grybauskaite, it is felt the agreement will not only increase trade contacts and contribute to European and American economic growth, but it will also further deepen transatlantic relations, especially with increasing aggression from the Russian Federation towards European Union member states. 

Grybauskaite also underlined the importance of the United States easing the export of its energy resources to Europe, and feels the decision will transform the European energy market, and alter the Baltic region’s energy dependency on Russia. 

Grybauskaite and Boehner last met in May 2013.