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Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaitė says that the European Union must invest more in its defense and do so more efficiently.
Dalia Grybauskaitė
Dalia Grybauskaitė
© DELFI / Andrius Ufartas

This requires promoting cooperation in the European military industry, accelerating the creation of the European Defense Fund and strengthening countries' resilience to cyber and hybrid threats, the president said in a press release.

She added that the EU's closer defense cooperation should not overlap NATO functions.

Grybauskaitė took part in a meeting of the leaders of the Baltic, Nordic and Benelux countries held in The Hague on Wednesday to discuss EU future, security and defense issues and Brexit negotiations ahead the EU's summit in Brussels.

"The Netherlands, Belgium and Luxembourg understand the security challenges facing our region and help to overcome them. These countries were among the first to contribute their troops to NATO's forward presence forces in Lithuania," the president said in the press release.

"The Benelux countries and Lithuania also have strong economic ties: the volume of trade last year exceeded 3 billion euros," she said.

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