NATO ships will be deployed if needed - Grybauskaite

  • 2014-03-11
  • From wire reports, VILNIUS

President Dalia Grybauskaite says that Lithuania's allies are ready to react to the Russian threat, not only by deploying six additional U.S. fighter planes, but also navy ships in the Baltic sea.

Talking about defensive measures Grybauskaite assured that there will be as many of them as needed.

"And they will be enlisted as quickly as needed. If needed, ships will also be used. And this was proved by emergence of aircraft in Lithuania and Poland. As well as other elements and measures in Poland. We should know that we have those who will defend us and we can also defend ourselves. What is the most important, we cannot repeat the historic mistake - we must not be afraid of anyone," the president said in the interview for the national television show the Right to Know.

When asked whether negotiations related to ships are already taking place, Grybauskaite did not answer directly.

"I cannot tell you more than I can," the president said but implied that it is being negotiated on deployment of NATO ships.

When asked whether an appropriate way to enhance security would be to deploy in Lithuania, for example, U.S. defensive systems such as Patriot surface-to-air missiles, what some analysts have already suggested, Grybauskaite replied that the best defence is prevention and de-escalation of war.

According to the president, Russia which has started military activity in Crimea has no intentions to draw back and preserve dignity.

"We had a bad historic experience. We remember and may draw conclusions from the Cold War that culmination always occurs but cold war should not grow into hot war, this is crucial. Everyone suffers in cold war - those who are more at fault and those who are less. In the 21st century we do not need what is happening nearby. However, we cannot avoid everything, so, it is important to remain level-headed, dignified and confident, and not to allow to be kicked around again by anybody, even though we might be a small country," said Grybauskaite.