The month-long largest national exercise Lithuania has held this year, Lightning Bolt 2015, has ended. The exercise tested various types of situations, including swift mobilization of the Lithuanian reserve, response to a hybrid war and terrorist attacks, and also involved tactical training, the country's Ministry of National Defence said.

"The exercise went well. We have identified a considerable number of lessons to learn till the exercise next year," Chief of the Joint Staff Brigadier General Vilmantas Tamošaitis was quoted as saying in the ministry's press release.

The first phase of the exercise tested the mobilization system of the Lithuanian Armed Forces and the number of the ready reserve troops included into exercise training audience lists who would respond to the call to arrive at mobilizations centres on a designated time.

During the first day of mobilization, roughly 50 percent of the called up troops (out of 1 thousand call-up notices sent in Klaipeda, Marijampolė, Panevėžys and Šiauliai Districts according to the list of draftees who had declared their place of residence) turned out at the mobilization centres.

The second (main) phase of the exercise took place in Klaipeda, Kaišiadorys, Švenčionėliai, as well as the Gaižiūnai and Pabradė Training Areas. The Response Force of the Lithuanian Armed Forces cooperated with over 500 officers of the security system of the interior - the Lithuanian Police, the Anti-terrorist Operations Unit ARAS, the Public Security Service, and the Fire and Rescue Department. Military personnel and officers of the mentioned authorities trained eliminating jointly threats to the state in case of alleged hybrid warfare, and combating emerging threats.

During the final phase, live infantry fire exercise, Lithuanian soldiers and officers of the Public Security Service and the State Border Guard Service honed their skills of firing infantry arms.

Exercise Lightning Bolt 2015 simulated various types of the currently most relevant threats, ranging from hybrid warfare to terrorist attacks. The exercise scenario involved such strategic infrastructure objects as an LNG terminal, Klaipėda Seaport, Palanga Airport, etc.

Exercise Lightning Bolt 2015 was organized by the Joint Staff of the Lithuanian Armed Forces. The training event involved over 3 thousand troops from all the services and commands of the Lithuanian Armed Forces and roughly 500 officers of the interior security system.

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