The Defense Ministry will propose to somewhat increase Lithuania's military contribution to missions in Mali and Afghanistan and to send troops to the Strait of Hormuz to help protect shipping in the Persian Gulf.
Alytaus r. sav. nuotr.

The ministry is submitting a draft parliamentary resolution on Lithuanian military units' participation in multinational operations to the Seimas for approval.

The parliament is expected to pass the resolution by January because the current mandate will expire at the end of 2019.

"This is a tactical increase where we may be lacking (in numbers)," Defense Minister Raimundas Karoblis told reporters on Friday.

"Our proposal is regarding Afghanistan where the threshold has basically been reached already. For certain periods, additional personnel with specific functions are needed there," he said.

Around 50 Lithuanian troops, mostly from Special Operations Forces, are currently deployed to NATO-led Operation Resolute Support in Afghanistan.

According to Karoblis, an additional number of troops in Mali is needed because members of the National Defense Volunteer Force carrying out force protection tasks in the German contingent's camp in Gao will rotate every six months instead of four months.

"We may need certain some reinforcement," the minister said.

Currently, around 40 Lithuanians are deployed to the UN-led stability operation MINUSMA in Mali.

According to Karoblis, the ministry will most probably ask to raise the threshold numbers both in MINUSMA and in Afghanistan by ten.

The minister said that the draft resolution will also provide for sending Lithuanian troops to the Strait of Hormuz, a proposal already endorsed by the State Defense Council chaired by President Gitanas Nauseda.

"It would probably be a relatively small force. We are considering (sending) staff officers," the minister said.

The Strait of Hormuz is a key waterway to the open ocean from oil-rich Gulf countries.

BNS
It is prohibited to copy and republish the text of this publication without a written permission from UAB „BNS“.

Nauseda arrives in Brussels for his 1st EU summit

Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda on Thursday arrived in Brussels to attend his first EU...

Russia dismisses reports of possible spy swap with Lithuania and Norway

The spokeswoman for Russia 's Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Thursday said she had no information...

Landsbergis: parties' defense spending deal not being implemented

An agreement that Lithuania's parliamentary parties signed a year ago to set out the country's...

Karbauskis urges Zemaitaitis to step down as parliament vice-speaker

Ramunas Karbauskis , the leader of the ruling Lithuanian Farmers and Greens Union, says Remigijus...

Lithuania prepares for 'spy swap' with Russia

Lithuania and Russia have agreed on an exchange of people convicted of espionage , well-informed...