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Lithuania will increase its contribution to the EU's military operations and missions, Defence Minister Raimundas Karoblis said during a meeting of the bloc's defense and foreign ministers on Monday.
French troops in Mali
French troops in Mali
© AFP / Scanpix

"Karoblis said during the meeting that in 2017, Lithuania would continue to participate and would increase its contribution to the EU's military operations and missions," the Lithuanian Defence Ministry said in a statement.

Lithuania currently participates in three of the EU's five operations and missions: the country has contributed a total of around ten troops to the Atalanta and Sophia operations and a training mission in Mali. The EU also conducts training missions in Somali and the Central African Republic.

The EU ministers decided on Monday to establish a military headquarters to coordinate these operations. The missions will continue to have their own command centers.

"Lithuania supports the European Union's security enhancement initiatives, but to ensure their implementation, the EU has to strengthen cooperation with NATO and seek operational synergies with the Alliance," Karoblis said in a press release.

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