NATO Deploys Missiles in Proximity to Russia’s Borders

NATO countries are responding to the Baltic states’ request to enhance Europe’s defense capabilities in the region by implementing a rotational air defense model stationed in Lithuania.

Lithuanian Defense Minister Arvydas Anušauskas announced during a press conference on Thursday that the defense systems will become operational in his country later this year. The creation of a rotational system, agreed upon by NATO countries during the Vilnius NATO Summit, will involve allied nations deploying air defense systems to the Baltic states for a specific duration of time.

Anušauskas did not disclose the specific Western countries involved in the initial installation of air defenses in Lithuania. However, he did mention that the equipment includes Patriot surface-to-air missile systems. The defense official further clarified that these Patriots were provided by a European ally, rather than the United States.

“The principle we are expecting to implement is not a temporary measure for a few months, but rather a long-term strategy that will enhance our air defense capabilities throughout the entire year,” stated Anušauskas, as reported by Lithuanian National Radio and Television.

On Friday, Newsweek took the initiative to contact NATO’s press office via email in order to acquire further information.

Several European countries are expressing concerns about the potential for an escalation of conflict between Russia and NATO due to Russia’s ongoing war against Ukraine. In response, NATO has been taking measures to enhance its defense systems along its eastern border. One of these measures included conducting trainings in the spring, involving more than 90,000 troops from all 32 member states. These trainings specifically focused on countries that share a border with Russia, including the Baltic nations and Poland.

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Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia have been among the most vocal members of NATO, urging the Western bloc to be prepared for Russia’s future aggression in the region. Estonia’s Foreign Intelligence Service has even warned that Russia is actively preparing for a potential conflict with NATO countries within the next decade.

Tensions have remained high between Moscow and the West throughout the war in Ukraine, with NATO members offering unequivocal support. Russian President Vladimir Putin has attributed his country’s involvement in the war to the influence of the alliance on Ukraine’s government. Putin has further stated that the ongoing conflict can only be resolved if Ukraine agrees to maintain neutrality.

The Kremlin has accused the West of extending the war in Ukraine by strengthening Kyiv’s military capabilities. Last month, they issued a warning that NATO would be crossing a line if its member countries decided to deploy their own troops in the conflict. Although no NATO nation has expressed intentions to do so, French President Emmanuel Macron stated that “nothing should be ruled out” in the effort to prevent Russia from prevailing in this war.

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