Civilian rescue operations should be coordinated by a separate crisis management centre and not by the army, says Kęstutis Budrys, the president's adviser on national security issues.
Karinių jūrų pajėgų paieškos ir gelbėjimo laivas Šakiai
© KAM

"We should be talking about a civilian, united and constantly functioning crisis management system in Lithuania so we could be clear in our decisions and be able to act fast. And we had rudiments of it (…) and destroyed them years ago," he told the Žinių Radijas news radio on Tuesday morning.

According to the presidential adviser, civilian rescue operations in neighbouring countries, including Estonia, Finland, Poland and Germany, are carried out by border guard services or special centres.

He also noted that rescue operations in Latvia are carried out by the country's naval forces because the naval forces are also in charge of border protection.

"It's, obviously, a civilian kind of function and this function is not characteristic of the army," Budrys said.

Discussions on the coordination of rescue operations were sparked by the disappearance of an An-2 plane with two pilots, en route from Goteborg to Klaipėda on May 16. It was found sunken in the Baltic Sea three day later and the body of one of the pilots was spotted inside the aircraft two days later.

BNS
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