+255 22 2864971 |  +255 776 018 829 |  info@lithuania-tz.com

LITHUANIA DAILY NEWS BULLETIN, October 10, 2022

Oct 17 2022

LITHUANIA DAILY NEWS BULLETIN


IN THIS ISSUE:

  1. Upcoming events in Lithuania for Monday, October 10, 2022
  2. President Nauseda to meet German troops deployed to Lithuania 
  3. German brigade would be moved to Lithuania within 10 days in crisis – ministers 
  4. Lithuania to join Germany's European air defense initiative – minister 
  5. Lithuania reports 60 new COVID-19 cases, 1 death
  6. Lithuania to buy eight HIMARS systems from US, expects to sign contract by December
  7. Putin will use grain to blackmail again in winter – Lithuania's Landsbergis
  8. PM, econmin invite to French businesses to invest in Lithuania
  9. Lithuania condemns Russia's strikes on Ukrainian civilians as sign of desperation 
  10. Russia will try to destabilize situation as it's losing in Ukraine – Lithuania's Nauseda
  11. Russia will try to destabilize situation as it's losing in Ukraine – Lithuania's Nauseda (expands)
  12. Lithuanian president calls 2023 budget bill "a serious step forward" (expands)
  13. Russia will try to destabilize situation as it's losing in Ukraine – Lithuania's Nauseda (further expands)
  14. Germany has plans for brigade exercises in Lithuania – president
  15. Lithuanian president suggests borrowing up to 3 pct of GDP for defense
  16. NATO jets in Baltics scrambled 4 times over Russian aircraft last week
  17. Poland joins regional cyber defense centre in Lithuania – ministry
  18. Lithuania receives 138,200 doses of Omicron-adapted coronavirus vaccine
  19. Lukashenko wants attention when accusing West of plotting attacks -Lithuania's Landsbergis
  20. I want to believe Russia's new attacks will "wake up the napping West" – Landsbergis
  21. Lithuanian, Germany agreed on brigade deployment – Landsbergis
  22. Lithuanian parlt postpones 3rd electricity market liberalization until January, 2026
  23. Upcoming events in Lithuania for Tuesday, October 11, 2022

Upcoming events in Lithuania for Monday, October 10, 2022

VILNIUS, Oct 010, BNS – The following events are scheduled in Lithuania for Monday, October 10, 2022:

PRESIDENT Gitanas Nauseda to meet with troops from the German brigade headquarters and battalion deployed in Lithuania at Gaiziunai Training Area in Rukla at 10 a.m.; followed by comments to the press at 11.30 a.m.

THE LITHUANIAN ARMY

Combat shooting as part of the international Exercise Fast Griffin will take place at the Gaiziunai Training Area of the Great Lithuanian Hetman Jonusas Radvila Training Regiment in Jonava district)., with the opportunity to interview President Gitanas Nauseda, Lithuanian Chief of Defense Valdemaras Rupsyss and Brigadier General Christian Nawrat, commander of the Germany army's 41st Tank Brigade.

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., Vilnius newsroom


President Nauseda to meet German troops deployed to Lithuania 

VILNIUS, Oct 10, BNS – President Gitanas Nauseda on Monday is going to Rukla, in the central district of Jonava, to meet with members of the forward command element of the German brigade assigned to Lithuania.

The president's office has said that he will also meet with troops from the brigade's battalion, in Lithuania for Exercise Fast Griffin, and will observe the battalion's firing drills at the Gaiziunai training area. 

Some 250 military personnel and 80 military vehicles arrived in Lithuania last week for the first joint training event since the agreement with Germany on the assignment of the brigade to Lithuania was reached in June. 

The Lithuanian Armed Forces have said that the brigade's forward command element has been deployed to Lithuania for permanent presence since September, and the brigade's "components are in Germany, pre-assigned and combat-ready in no notice". 

The aim of the joint exercise of Lithuania's King Mindaugas Hussar Battalion and the German allies in is to integrate the German brigade into Lithuania's defense plans.

Germany is also leading NATO's multinational battalion stationed in Lithuania since 2017.

 

By Milena Andrukaitytė

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., +370 5 239 64 16, Vilnius newsroom


German brigade would be moved to Lithuania within 10 days in crisis – ministers 

RUKLA, Lithuania, Oct 10, BNS – The German brigade assigned to Lithuania will not be permanently stationed in the country, but would be moved to Lithuania within 10 days in a crisis, the two countries' defense ministers have said.  

"We will ensure that the brigade can be moved to Lithuania in a short period of time, within 10 days. It is therefore very important that we do exercises on a regular basis," German Defense Minister Christine Lambrecht told a news conference in Rukla, in central Lithuania, on Saturday. 

In Rukla, Lambrecht and her Lithuanian counterpart, Arvydas Anusauskas, inaugurated the forward command element of the brigade assigned to Lithuania a few months ago, and observed the unit's first exercise.  

Some 250 military personnel and 80 military vehicles arrived in Lithuania last week for the exercise.

Apart from the command element, the rest of the brigade will be stationed in Germany and will come to Lithuania for drills, according to Lambrecht.

"Individual units, or perhaps even the full brigade, will come to Lithuania and train here," she said. 

Anusauskas said the German brigade would be deployed to Lithuania within ten days in the event of a crisis, adding that this would be fast enough. 

"In Ukraine's case, the information about the concentration of Russian forces on its border was known for almost 90 days," he said.

Earlier, Lithuanian officials said they wanted the German brigade to be permanently deployed to the country.

Developing infrastructure

Lithuania currently lacks the infrastructure to accommodate a larger number of allied troops, and the brigade consists of around 3,000 to 4,000 troops.

Lambrecht says that Germany will deploy more ammunition and weapons to Lithuania, which will make it easier to move troops between the countries.

"It is important to take these steps as we prepare to move the entire brigade here," she said. 

According to Anusauskas, Lithuania is developing its military infrastructure and training areas to ensure the necessary conditions for allied troops' presence in the country.

In preparation for hosting more allied troops, Lithuania has announced plans to build three new military complexes with a capacity of accommodating 800 troops each, and to expand other barracks.

'Lithuania can count on us' 

Berlin and Vilnius agreed on the brigade's assignment and deployment to Lithuania in June, amid concerns about the security of the Alliance's eastern flank in the wake of Russia's invasion of Ukraine. 

Anusauskas described Russia as a direct and long-term threat.

"Germany's leadership following the decision to reinforce the forward presence in Lithuania (...) shows Germany's commitment to security in the entire Baltic region," he said. 

Lambrecht said that "Lithuania can count on us".

"We are ready to defend each other and stand by each other's side, as allied partners should", she said.

Germany is also leading NATO's multinational battalion stationed in Lithuania since 2017.

 

 

By Saulius Jakučionis

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., +370 5 205 85 10, Vilnius newsroom


Lithuania to join Germany's European air defense initiative – minister 

RUKLA, Lithuania, Oct 10, BNS – Lithuania will join Germany's initiative to bolster Europe's air defense, Defense Minister Arvydas Anusauskas has said. 

"I confirmed during the meeting today that we will participate in this European air defense initiative," he told journalists in Rukla on Saturday after meeting with his German counterpart, Christine Lambrecht. 

Anusauskas did not specify in what form the country would participate in the initiative.

According to Lambrecht, Germany expects to sign a letter of intent on the development of a European air defense system with its allies at NATO defense ministers' meeting scheduled for October 12-13. 

In the German minister's words, air defense in Europe is an area "where improvements are needed".

"This is why Germany has taken this initiative," she said.

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz in August proposed creating a missile defense system in northern and eastern Europe.  

 

By Saulius Jakučionis

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., +370 5 205 85 10, Vilnius newsroom


Lithuania reports 60 new COVID-19 cases, 1 death

VILNIUS, Oct 10, BNS – Lithuania has recorded 60 new coronavirus infections and one death from COVID-19 over the past 24 hours, official statistics showed on Monday morning.

Of the new cases, 55 were primary, four were secondary and one was tertiary.

The number of patients hospitalized with COVID-19 now stands at 185, including eight ICU cases.

The 14-day primary infection rate has edged down to 451.2 cases per 100,000 people, with the seven-day percentage of positive tests down to 33.9 percent.

The daily number of new coronavirus cases remains well below the peak of over 14,000 reached in early February.

More than 1.2 million people in Lithuania have tested positive with COVID-19 at least once.

Some 70 percent of the Lithuanian population have received at least one coronavirus vaccine jab so far.

 

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., +370 5 205 85 10, Vilnius newsroom


Lithuania to buy eight HIMARS systems from US, expects to sign contract by December

VILNIUS, Oct 10, BNS – Lithuania is planning to purchase eight M142 HIMARS multiple rocket launchers from the United States, with the contract expected to be signed by December, Defense Minister Arvydas Anusauskas has said. 

"(As to) the contract, the Americans have given practically 90 percent assurances that this is going happen by the start of December," he told BNS. "This is a separate system and eight launchers, launch systems." 

The systems are expected to be delivered to Lithuania in 2025. 

According to Anusauskas, Latvia and Estonia are buying six HIMARS systems each. 

After the Lithuanian government last week increase the country's planned 2022 defense spending by 148 million euros, the minister said that some 60 million euros of the money would be allocated for HIMARS systems this year.

The additional funding will also be used for the acquisition of Joint Light Tactical Vehicles (JLTV), medium-range radars and ammunition.

The US has sent HIMARS systems to Ukraine as part of its military aid to the country which is fighting back against Russia's invasion.  

 

By Ignas Jačauskas

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., +370 5 205 85 08, Vilnius newsroom


Putin will use grain to blackmail again in winter – Lithuania's Landsbergis

VILNIUS, Oct 10, BNS - Russian President Vladimir Putin will again try to block Ukraine's grain exports this winter, Lithuanian Foreign Minister Gabrielius Landsbergis says, adding that Kyiv needs help.

"Judging by past performance and knowing that he is open to using starvation as a weapon, it seems likely that Putin will again try to blackmail the world by blockading Ukraine's grain this winter," Landsbergis tweeted on Sunday.

"We can permanently limit Putin's ability to threaten the world's food supplies. We can empower Ukraine to defend her seas and restore her economy. Let's do this sooner rather than later," the foreign minister said.

In his words, EU's ATALANTA mission is already protecting shipping from piracy in the Western Indian Ocean, and this model could be used in the Black Sea too.

"Putin's use of grain as a tool for blackmail must be stopped. We must get serious about stopping it. We can build defenses against it," Landsbergis wrote. "We simply cannot trust the occupier that is stealing Ukraine's grain to be honest in negotiations over exporting Ukraine's grain."

In his words, longer-range coastal defenses in the Black Sea along with military escorts for shipping would boost Ukraine's economy, secure grain exports and avert a global food crisis.

"Sooner or later we will inevitably have to strengthen security in the Black Sea, especially if Putin refuses to renew the "Grain for Peace" deal in November, which he is already threatening to do.

Ukraine also needs leverage to expand the categories of products that can be exported, thereby regaining her economic sovereignty and increasing her ability to fight and rebuild. We can supply this leverage," Lithuania's top diplomat said.

Moscow's military invasion launched in late February paralyzed Ukraine's wheat exports as its ports were blocked and mined. An agreement brokered by Ankara in the second half of July helped to end the Russian blockade and allowed the shipment of grain from the port of Odessa to start. This helped to alleviate the global food crisis, with food becoming very expensive in some of the poorest countries.

Under the Ukraine-Russia agreement with the United Nations and Turkey, a joint coordination center was formally opened to control Ukrainian grain exports through the Black Sea and to ensure that ships do not carry illegal cargo, such as arms.

Western leaders accuse the Kremlin of cynically using food as a weapon and of waging an imperial-style predatory war.

By Jurgita Andriejauskaitė

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., Vilnius newsroom


PM, econmin invite to French businesses to invest in Lithuania

VILNIUS, Oct 10, BNS – Lithuanian Prime Minister Ingrid Simonyte and Economy and Innovation Minister Ausrine Armonaite will take part in a Lithuanian-French business forum in Paris this week where they will invite French businessmen to invest in Lithuania.

"France is one of Lithuania's most important economic partners and a priority export market for our country. The Franco-Lithuanian Business Forum in Paris will open up even more opportunities for our country's businesses to establish useful contacts and attract more investments," Armonaite said in a statement.

During her meetings with French business representatives, the minister plans to present the country's investment and tax environment, Lithuania's strong business sectors that are of interest to foreign investors. Armonaite will also present the Green Corridor initiative, as well as the benefits of setting up in free economic zones and industrial parks.

During her visit to France, Simonyte is scheduled to meet her French counterpart Elisabeth Borne, and Mathias Cormann, secretary general of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).

During the visit, the prime minister will also address the OECD Council, open the Franco-Lithuanian Business Forum, and meet with members of the Lithuanian-French community. The prime minister is also scheduled to visit Sciences-Po, Paris School of International Affairs, and have a public discussion with the school's academic community, as well as an informal lunch with French political scientists, journalists and intellectuals.

The visit is expected to focus on strengthening bilateral cooperation between Lithuania and France, Russia's war against Ukraine, Europe's energy security, support for Ukraine, EU sanctions against Russia and support for military aggression against Belarus.

French investment in Lithuania amounted to 711 million euros in the second quarter of this year, ranking France 11th in terms of investment in Lithuania last year. More than 100 French companies are currently operating in Lithuania. 

Armonaite will also take part in an informal discussion with OECD ambassadors and will present Lithuania's assistance measures for Ukraine. The discussion will focus on how the OECD could help Ukraine attract investment for a sustainable economic recovery.

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., +370 5 205 85 11, Vilnius newsroom


Lithuania condemns Russia's strikes on Ukrainian civilians as sign of desperation 

VILNIUS, Oct 10, BNS – The Lithuanian Foreign Ministry on Monday condemned Russia's missile strikes on civilians in Ukrainian cities, saying that such attacks are a sign of desperation.

"Russian forces' attacks on civilians and civilian infrastructure in Ukraine are in flagrant violation of international humanitarian law and its protection of civilians in conflict," the ministry said in a statement. "Russia's choice of terror tactics shows the desperation of the regime."  

The ministry "strongly condemns the bombing of Kyiv and other Ukrainian cities by the Russian armed forces, targeting innocent civilians and civilian infrastructure".

Ukrainian officials and media reported on Monday morning that Russia had carried out missile strikes on a number of Ukrainian cities.

At least five blasts were heard in Kyiv. Local police say five people were killed and 12 others injured.

Ukrainian media also reported explosions in Dnipro, Khmelnytskyi, Ternopil, Zhytomyr, Kharkiv, and in the Ivano-Frankivsk region.

According to the Lithuanian Foreign Ministry, Russia must be held accountable for the attacks under international law.

The ministry demands that Russia immediately cease its aggression against Ukraine and withdraw its troops from all Ukrainian territory.

 

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., +370 5 205 85 10, Vilnius newsroom


Russia will try to destabilize situation as it's losing in Ukraine – Lithuania's Nauseda

RUKLA, Jonava District, Lithuania, Oct 10, BNS – Russia will try to further destabilize the situation as it's losing in Ukraine, Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda says, commenting on Russian's latest shelling in Ukraine.

"We have to be ready for Russia, the Kremlin regime, trying to destabilize the situation more and more and taking desperate action as it's losing in Ukraine, and this certainly increases the overall risk, both in Ukraine and elsewhere," Nauseda told reporters in Rukla on Monday.

In his words, Russia must come under increased pressed through international sanctions.

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., +370 5 205 85 10, Vilnius newsroom


Russia will try to destabilize situation as it's losing in Ukraine – Lithuania's Nauseda (expands)

RUKLA, Jonava District, Lithuania, Oct 10, BNS – Russia will try to further destabilize the situation as it's losing in Ukraine, Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda says, commenting on Russian's latest shelling in Ukraine.

"We have to be ready for Russia, the Kremlin regime, trying to destabilize the situation more and more and taking desperate action as it's losing in Ukraine, and this certainly increases the overall risk, both in Ukraine and elsewhere," Nauseda told reporters in Rukla on Monday.

In his words, Russia must come under increased pressed through international sanctions.

"A lot of red lines have been crossed, and a few more remain. These are the most terrible red lines, and I mean the threat of nuclear weapons," the president said.

Ukraine reported on Monday that a number of Ukrainian cities, including the capital Kyiv, had come under Russia's missile attack, with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky saying that energy infrastructure was targeted.

Local officials report that people have been killed and injured in the attacks.

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., +370 5 205 85 10, Vilnius newsroom


Lithuanian president calls 2023 budget bill "a serious step forward" (expands)

VILNIUS, Oct 10, BNS – The government's 2023 budget bill is a serious step forward, Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda says, hoping that some things will be improved when the budget will be considered by lawmakers as both the ruling block and the opposition will pool their efforts on this.

"Certainly many of the comments have been taken into account, and in fact we voiced our expectation for a clear plan to reassure our population as we approach the cold season. We also called for a very clear business support plan, which has also been presented, and when all the measures are taken together, the package is not that small, up to around 4.5 percent of GDP," Nauseda told reporters in Rukla on Monday. "This is a good step forward, I can really say, a serious step forward."

The president, however, missed more targeted measures for particularly vulnerable groups, such as poor families with children.

"But I think we will certainly be able to adjust and improve some things during the deliberation, and I hope that all political parties, both the ruling coalition and the opposition, will work intensively, not to undermine anyone, but to make the budget bill even better," the president said.

The Lithuanian government on Friday approved the 2023 state budget bill and it will be put before the country's parliament, the Seimas, next week.

State budget revenue will grow by 3.4 percent next year (510 million euros) to stand at 15.62 billion euros, including EU funds. Expenditure is projected to go up by 6.1 percent (1.07 billion euros) to 18.61 billion euros.

The projected state budget deficit stands at 4.9 percent, and the public debt will rise to 43 percent of GDP.

The state plans to spend 1.930 billion euros to mitigate the impact of energy price increases on households and businesses.

The state vows to compensate for the public electricity price for households to make sure it will not exceed 28 cents per KWh in the first half of the year and 33 cents in the second half.

Businesses would be state compensation for electricity prices exceeding 24 cents per KWh in the last quarter of this year and 28 cents in the first quarter of next year.

Also, businesses with energy costs amounting to at least 10 percent will also have their tax recovery suspended until late April.

Moreover, 1.552 billion euros will be spent on raising residential income over the next year, 275 million euros will be spent on security, and the state will spend more than 2.9 billion euros on investments in various areas, using different funding sources.

By Erika Alonderytė-Kazlauskė

Editor: Roma Pakėnienė

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., +370 5 205 85 11, Vilnius newsroom


Russia will try to destabilize situation as it's losing in Ukraine – Lithuania's Nauseda (further expands)

RUKLA, Jonava District, Lithuania, Oct 10, BNS – Russia will try to further destabilize the situation as it's losing in Ukraine, Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda says, commenting on Russian's latest shelling in Ukraine.

"We have to be ready for Russia, the Kremlin regime, trying to destabilize the situation more and more and taking desperate action as it's losing in Ukraine, and this certainly increases the overall risk, both in Ukraine and elsewhere," Nauseda told reporters in Rukla on Monday.

In his words, Russia must come under increased pressed through international sanctions.

"A lot of red lines have been crossed, and a few more remain. These are the most terrible red lines, and I mean the threat of nuclear weapons," the president said.

Commenting on the recent attacks, Speaker of the Seimas Viktorija Cmilyte-Nielsen said the West is still not doing enough, stressing the need to sanction Russia to the maximum extent possible for the country to be excluded from international formats where it is still present, and to also help Ukraine with air defense systems. 

"With every blow, with every casualty, with every explosion, Russia is showing the democratic world that we are still doing too little and too slowly. We need the maximum possible sanctions, the maximum legal reaction by throwing Russia out of wherever it still has the right to decide. And we need the maximum arms assistance. And especially air defense systems because today's strikes show that the Ukrainians know how to use them," the speaker posted on Facebook on Monday

Ukraine reported on Monday that a number of Ukrainian cities, including the capital Kyiv, had come under Russia's missile attack, with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky saying that energy infrastructure was targeted.

Local officials report that people have been killed and injured in the attacks.

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., +370 5 205 85 10, Vilnius newsroom


Germany has plans for brigade exercises in Lithuania – president

RUKLA, Jonava District, Lithuania, Oct 10, BNS - Germany is responsibly meeting its commitment to ensure the presence of brigade-sized troops in Lithuania, Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda says, adding that an exercise plan has been approved.

"The plan has definitely been approved. During the execution of this exercise, we can very well see where we have weak spots and coordination gaps that can be filled. Such exercises are not only an opportunity to bolster combat power, but to improve interoperability as well," the president told reporters in Rukla on Monday as he observed the Exercise Fast Griffin, the first exercise of the German brigade assigned to Lithuania.

"I can certainly assure the Lithuanian people that Germany, the leader of the forward presence battalion, is very clearly taking both political and military responsibility. As usual for the Germans, they are doing it in a very methodical and precise way, and I am convinced that Lithuania will also do everything in a methodical and precise way, so that all our obligations, as a host country, are implemented on time and we can have the security that is necessary to build and increase our prosperity," Nauseda said.

Last week, some 250 German troops and 80 pieces of military equipment arrived in Lithuania for the first joint exercise since June when the agreement on the assignment of a German brigade to Lithuania was reached.

The Lithuanian army said earlier the brigade's command element was permanently deployed in Lithuania in early September, and the brigade's other units are deployed in Germany and would be ready for immediate combat operations.

Earlier, Lithuanian officials said they would seek the German brigade's permanent deployment in Lithuania once the infrastructure is ready. 

German Defense Minister Christine Lambrecht visited in Rukla last week and said the brigade would not be permanently deployed but would be moved to Lithuania within 10 days, in case of a crisis.

Germany is also leading the NATO multinational battalion deployed in Lithuania in 2017.

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., +370 5 205 85 10, Vilnius newsroom


Lithuanian president suggests borrowing up to 3 pct of GDP for defense

RUKLA, Jonava District, Lithuania, Oct 10, BNS – Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda has proposed including into next year's state budget a possibility to of borrow up to 3 per cent of the country's GDP for national defense, saying that the currently planned funds may be insufficient.

In his words, the plan to spend the existing 2.5 percent of GDP on national defense next year is not in line with the declarations on the need to upgrade the Lithuanian army and the ambition to improve the country's infrastructure to host NATO allies.

"Budget spending on national defense remains at 2.5 percent. At the same time, we are making very nice declarations, repeating the need to increase the attractiveness of the country as hosting foreign combat power, and also to upgrade our army, and to up the general readiness of our troops. These are indeed very nice declarations, but let’s not forget that they have to be backed up by concrete financial resources," Nauseda told reporters in Rukla on Monday.

"That is why I think we need to have some flexibility in the budget, let's say the same 2.5 percent of GDP, but with the possibility to borrow up to 3 percent of GDP, which would be more in line with these ambitious goals", he said.

The president stressed that this option would save time in the decision-making process, if any need arises.

"Since the time factor is not in our favor, we have to make the best possible use of time. And for that reason, I think we really need to see what's happening in the region, what threats are emerging, what other NATO countries in the same region are doing. For example, Estonia has decided to increase its national defense funding to 2.9 percent of GDP, not to mention Poland where national defense funding is going up to more than 4 percent," Nauseda said.

Last week, the Lithuanian government proposed to allocate more than 1.77 billion euros, or 2.52 percent of the projected GDP, to national defense.

Next year's state budget bill also includes the possibility of additional borrowing for national defense in case any upward adjustments to the economic outlook, if the previously allocated funds fall short of the 2.52 percent of GDP threshold. In that case, the state would be allowed to borrow as much as necessary to reach this threshold.

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., +370 5 205 85 10, Vilnius newsroom


NATO jets in Baltics scrambled 4 times over Russian aircraft last week

VILNIUS, Oct 10, BNS – NATO's fighter jets policing Baltic airspace were scrambled four times last week to intercept Russian aircraft flying in international airspace over the Baltic Sea in violation of flight rules, the Lithuanian Defense Ministry said on Monday.

Most of the Russian aircraft did not use their onboard transponders and had no pre-filed flight plans, nor did they maintain radio communication with the Regional Traffic Control Center, it said.

The NATO Baltic air policing mission is carried out from air bases in Lithuania and Estonia.

 

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., +370 5 205 85 10, Vilnius newsroom


Poland joins regional cyber defense centre in Lithuania – ministry

VILNIUS, Oct 10, BNS - Poland will become a fifth country to join the Regional Cyber Defense Center (RCDC), which operates as a branch of the National Cyber Security Center, Lithuania's Ministry of National Defense said on Monday.

"Operating for the past 18 months, the Regional Cyber Defense Center continues to expand and grow. Poland's participation will only strengthen it further and allow for a better assessment of the cyber security situation in our region," Vice Minister of National Defense Margiris Abukevicius said in a statement.

The decision on Poland's accession was taken on Monday at a meeting of the RCDC's in Kaunas, attended by representatives of Lithuania, the United States, Ukraine and Georgia. Representatives of Poland attended the meeting as observers.

Poland's accession and the necessary documents is expected to be completed later this year, and the first Polish representatives will start working in Kaunas in the near future.

The RCDC was launched in July, 2021 and is the key platform for practical cooperation with the US in the area of cyber defense, the statement reads. The center analyses regional cyber threats, exchanges relevant information with partners, and holds exercises, training and analytical studies in the area of cyber security.

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., +370 5 205 85 10, Vilnius newsroom


Lithuania receives 138,200 doses of Omicron-adapted coronavirus vaccine

VILNIUS, Oct 10, BNS – Lithuania has received 138,200 doses of an Omicron-adapted coronavirus vaccine, the Health Ministry said on Monday.

The vaccine targeting the BA.4 and BA.5 coronavirus sub-variants will be used for the first or second booster shots, with producers expected to deliver more than half a million adapted vaccine doses in October, it said. 

A second booster dose of the vaccine will be available to people aged 18 and over, according to the ministry.

Some 70 percent of the Lithuanian population have received at least one coronavirus vaccine jab so far.

Just over a third of the population have been vaccinated with the first booster dose and 5,300 people have received their second booster shot.

 

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., +370 5 205 85 10, Vilnius newsroom


Lukashenko wants attention when accusing West of plotting attacks -Lithuania's Landsbergis

VILNIUS, Oct 10, BNS – Authoritarian Belarusian leader Alexander Lukashenko is crying out for attention with his accusations of the West allegedly preparing attacks on Belarus as his country's economy crumbles to pieces, Lithuanian Foreign Minister Gabrielius Landsbergis says.

"All these statements remind me of a cry for help. Judging from the information we have, the economy is in tatters, in ruins, because of the sanctions, because of the isolation. We have to bear in mind that this is a much weaker country than Russia, in every sense," Landsbergis told reporters at the Seimas on Monday. "Politically, Lukashenko has no legitimacy comparable to Russia's, and Russia's failing war seems to be dragging Belarus into the pit of global isolation."

Earlier in the day, the Belarusian state news agency BelTA quoted Lukashenko as accusing NATO and some European countries of planning attacks against Belarus.

Lukashenko addressed a conference on security issues and said Poland, Lithuania and Ukraine had allegedly begun training militants recruited from ranks of Belarusian radicals to carry out acts of sabotage, terrorist attacks, and organize a military mutiny in Belarus, adding that it's becoming an immediate threat.

"The attempt to shout about all sorts of action being prepared by neighboring countries is an attention-grabber, perhaps the only thing he (Lukashenko) hopes to do is to cause additional problems for the Ukrainians in order to maintain forces in the northern part of Ukraine, but the Ukrainians have been doing this for a long time and they see the risks in the same way we do," Landsbergis said, commenting on Lukashenko's statements.

He also confirmed there were no reports of possible provocations from Belarus, adding that the threat level remains unchanged. 

"The facts we have, both from public sources and from our services, do not allow us to see any action directed against Lithuania and in any way changing our situation. In fact, on the contrary, the equipment is being taken out of Belarus, it seems that it will be used against Ukraine, probably on the front line, it's just that Russia is lacking its own weapons and is pooling everything it can, taking them from Belarus as well," the Lithuanian foreign minister said.

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., +370 645 093 86, Vilnius newsroom


I want to believe Russia's new attacks will "wake up the napping West" – Landsbergis

VILNIUS, Oct 10, BNS - Lithuanian Foreign Minister Gabrielius Landsbergis regrets that the West have failed to provide more air defense elements to Ukraine, and hopes Russia's new attacks will "wake up the napping West".

"I very much want to believe that these attacks will wake up the napping West again. I regret myself and I hope that regret is shared by some of our partners who have been arguing for months about what arms can be transferred and what arms cannot be transferred," Landsbergis told reporters at the Seimas on Monday.

"If those weapons had been transferred, if more air defense elements had been transferred to Ukraine, we would obviously have fewer dead people," Lithuania's top diplomat said.

Ukraine reported on Monday that a number of Ukrainian cities, including the capital Kyiv, had come under Russia's missile attack, with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky saying that energy infrastructure was targeted.

Ate least 10 people have reportedly been killed and dozens have been injured during the missile attacks.

Landsbergis says the attacks specifically targeting civilian infrastructure "reveal to some, and confirm to others, the brutal nature of the Putin regime, its total disregard for human life and for any of the civilization norms we accept".

By Milena Andrukaitytė

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., +370 5 239 64 16, Vilnius newsroom


Lithuanian, Germany agreed on brigade deployment – Landsbergis

VILNIUS, Oct 10, BNS - Lithuania and Germany agreed this summer on the deployment of a German brigade in Lithuania, and not on the brigade's readiness to arrive in Lithuania swiftly, if needed, Foreign Minister Gabrielius Landsbergis says.

His comment followed the statement of German Defense Minister Christine Lambrecht, who visited Lithuania's Rukla last week, saying that the brigade assigned to Lithuania would be sent to the Baltic country within ten days, if needed.

Lithuanian officials said earlier they expected the brigade to be permanently deployed in Lithuania.

"Today, the situation is de facto as it is, and the Germans have confirmed that yes, we will come, in case of danger. We know that, but this is not the agreement we had," Lithuania's top diplomat said reporters at the Seimas. "The agreement signed by President Nauseda and Chancellor Scholz is on a brigade in Lithuania ready to fight."

In his words, the Lithuanian government has already agreed with the Ministry of National Defense on an infrastructure plan to host the brigade.

"It's clear from these dates when Lithuania will be ready to host the brigade. And perhaps it's not strange to expect for both the minister and Lithuania in general to voice a very clear invitation to the Germans to indicate whether the dates that Lithuania is providing are acceptable and in line with their planning schedule. We haven't heard that", Landsbergis said.

What both leaders agreed

Signed by Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda and German Chancellor Olaf Schulz in June, the joint communique states that "in addition to the current and reinforced enhanced Forward Presence Battle Group already in place, Germany is ready to lead a robust and combat-ready brigade in Lithuania dedicated to deter and defend against Russian aggression".

Initially, led by a permanently deployed Brigade Forward Command Element in Lithuania, this brigade will consist of German combat forces specifically designated for this purpose, potentially augmented by possible multinational contributions, "to form a powerful and exclusively dedicated combat formation ready to be rapidly de- and employed.", the documents reads.

These forces will be integrated into a regionally focused, intensive and comprehensive exercise program including rotating forces and Lithuanian Home Defense Forces in order to improve and ensure interoperability, cohesion, combat effectiveness and the ability for rapid reinforcement, the joint communique states.

The aforementioned forward presence command element was deployed in Lithuanain in September.

More information from Anusauskas

Last Saturday, Defense Minister Lambrecht stated that "we will ensure that the brigade can be moved to Lithuania in a short period of time, within 10 days".

Joining her at the press conference, Lithuanian National Defense Minister Arvydas Anusauskas said such a time frame was sufficient to react to the build-up of military forces at the country's borders, which Ukraine's experience showed.

Landsbergis hopes Anusauskas has more information about the German brigade's possible permanent deployment in Lithuania.

"But it's strange why he doesn't say so then", the foreign minister said. "So far, there's been no need for Lithuania to talk about hosting brigades, adapting infrastructure and so on, so when one states such facts, it's necessary to be very, very precise about what we are talking about," the foreign minister said.

By Saulius Jakučionis

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., +370 5 205 85 10, Vilnius newsroom


Lithuanian parlt postpones 3rd electricity market liberalization until January, 2026

VILNUS, Oct 10, BNS – The Lithuanian parliament on Monday postponed the third stage of electricity market liberalization for three years until January, 2026. 

The public electricity supply to households in this phase will be cut off on January 1, 2026, and they will be expected to pick an independent electricity supplier over the next three years. During this time, the government hopes that sufficient solar and wind farms will be installed in Lithuania, making electricity much cheaper. 

On Monday, 111 Seimas members voted in favor of the proposed amendments to the Law on Electricity, while one voted against and one abstained.

Vice Minister of Energy Inga Ziliene said earlier there were some 814,000 households in the third liberalization stage, and about half of them had not yet chosen an independent supplier (431,000 on October 10).

Third-stage consumers using up to 1m000 kWh of electricity per year were supposed to choose an independent supplier by December 18, and the liberalization process was expected to be completed by January, 2023.

By Sniegė Balčiūnaitė

Editor: Roma Pakėnienė

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., +370 5 239 64 14, Vilnius newsroom


Upcoming events in Lithuania for Tuesday, October 11, 2022

VILNIUS, Oct 11, BNS – The following events are scheduled in Lithuania for Tuesday, October 11, 2022:

PRIME MINISTER Ingrida Simonyte to open the Franco-Lithuanian Business Forum in Paris at 10 a.m. (Lithuanian time); to meet with her French counterpart Elisabeth Borne at 1 p.m.; to have lunch with French political scientists, journalists and intellectuals at 3 p.m.

 

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., Vilnius newsroom

Read 25 times
Rate this item
(0 votes)

About The Author

Upcoming events

There are no up-coming events

Our Gallery