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Joint Statement by Estonian, Latvian and Lithuanian Ministers of Defence

The Baltic Defence Ministers unanimously condemn the heightening escalation of the ongoing hybrid attack by the Belarusian regime, which is posing serious threats to European security.

“Complications can arise at any point of time and border area in the situation. We must stay vigilant and closely follow the Russian and Belarusian actions. These countries want to destabilize the security situation in Europe, and in our turn, we shall make every effort to make them fail,” says Minister of National Defence Arvydas Anušauskas.

The Defence Ministers of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia, Arvydas Anušauskas, Artis Pabriks and Kalle Laanet, see the security crisis unfolding on the Polish-Belarusian and Lithuanian-Belarusian border as very alarming, and unequivocally condemn the deliberate escalation of the ongoing hybrid attack by the Belarusian regime, which is posing serious threats to European security.

Ministers agree that large groups of people gathered and transported to the border area, where they are then forced to illegally cross the border, and this increases the possibility of provocations and serious incidents that could also spill over into military domain.

Ministers underscore that the recent unusual Russian military build-up near Ukraine is worrying and might carry additional security risks. They see the current situation as the most complex security crisis for our region, NATO and the European Union in many years.

The evolving crisis calls for continuous unity among NATO Allies and EU Member States, shared situational awareness and joint approach to ensure that the deliberate attempts of Belarus and Russia to destabilize the security situation in Europe would fail. Ministers particularly call for increased practical support from the EU in strengthening the security of its external borders. We must fully support our neighbours and ensure that no move by Belarus or Russia gets overlooked.

Baltic Defence Ministers are ready to support Poland also on bilateral basis.

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