Germany Says ‘Ready’ to Reinforce Troops in Lithuania

German Defense Minister Christine Lambrecht (Reuters Photo)

Germany announced as fears grow of a Russian invasion of Ukraine.

  • AFP Rukla (Lithuania)
  • Last Updated:February 22, 2022, 20:37 IST

German Defense Minister Christine Lambrecht on Tuesday said Berlin was ready to deploy more troops to Lithuania, amid growing fears of a Russian invasion of Ukraine. “NATO has further raised our common crisis response measures for the NRF (NATO response force) and Germany is also ready to provide additional land, sea, and air forces as reinforcement,” she said on a visit to Lithuania’s Rukla military base, where Germany “We are counting on a diplomatic solution to the Russian crisis. But credible military deterrence is necessary,” she added.

“Russia is acting like an aggressor and we do not know how far it will push this aggression.”

NATO deployed four battalions to Baltic states Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania as well as Poland in 2017 after Moscow annexed Crimea and helped separatists take over parts of eastern Ukraine.

It was the biggest reinforcement of NATO’s collective defenses since the Cold War.

The German contribution to the battalion in Lithuania numbered around 550 soldiers. Germany had already pledged up to 350 additional troop reinforcements this month.

Lambrecht’s visit came a day after Russia recognized two breakaway regions in Ukraine, prompting a backlash from the West and further fueling fears of a Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Lithuanian Defense Minister Arvydas Anusauskas said Tuesday that “the threats posed by Russia are not short-term, so our cooperation must be long-lasting”.

“Effective deterrence and defense can only be achieved with the permanent military presence of Germany and other allies in Lithuania,” he added.

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