Regional defense plans will need adjusting after Sweden's NATO membership

  • 2023-07-13
  • BNS/TBT Staff

VILNIUS - NATO's regional defense plans, approved this week, will still need adjusting once Sweden finally joins the Alliance, an adviser to Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda says.

"We will have to go back to the planning phase again and we will have to adjust the regional defense plans," Kestutis Budrys, the presidential advisor on national security issues, told reporters at the Seimas on Thursday.

NATO agreed on the new regional defense plans Lithuania was particularly focused on on the eve of the Vilnius summit.

The previous concept was that if the Russians attacked, the Baltic states would be expected to withstand the attack until allies could come to the rescue. Under the new plans, the Alliance would be ready to retaliate immediately.

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg later called the new plans the most detailed since the end of the Cold War.

The plans are not published, and Germany will play the biggest role in Lithuania's defense.

Meanwhile, Ankara agreed on the eve of the summit in Vilnius to no longer block Sweden's NATO membership. Turkish President Receo Tayyip Erdogan later said the ratification issue will be prioritized by the country's parliament when it gathers in October.

Sweden will become NATO's 32nd member country.