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I UNDERSTAND
English Section

Polish, Baltic FMs, defence ministers talk security in Riga

13.09.2021 15:30
Poland’s top diplomat and defence minister on Monday visited Riga for talks on regional security with their counterparts from Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia.
Audio
Photo:
Photo:Tymon Markowski/Polish Ministry of Foreign Affairs

The talks in the Latvian capital focused on regional security and cooperation at a time when Russian and Belarusian troops are conducting large-scale military exercises near the eastern flank of NATO, Poland's PAP news agency reported.

The eight ministers also discussed "hybrid threats from Belarus and the issue of deterrence and resilience building in the face of threats," according to the Polish defence ministry.

Other topics included the security of the eastern flank of NATO, including joint military exercises and the presence of NATO troops in Poland and the three Baltic states, according to officials.

After the talks, Polish Foreign Minister Zbigniew Rau said that cooperation between his country and its Baltic neighbours was "particularly close and intense."

"We face the same challenges and threats and it is more than natural for us to try to address them together," Rau added.

Poland’s Defence Minister Mariusz Błaszczak said: "Today in Riga we discussed security with the Baltic ministers for defence and foreign affairs."

He added that "hybrid attacks and what is happening in Belarus" posed a major challenge to countries in the region.

Błaszczak and his Baltic counterparts visited Ādaži Military Base near Riga, where a Canadian-led battalion-size battlegroup is stationed as part of NATO's Enhanced Forward Presence (eFP) on the eastern edge of the alliance.

While at the site, Błaszczak said that "interoperability and solidarity" were key to regional security and "the best response to threats."

He also listed "disinformation and cyber attacks" among "big threats today." 

The Polish, Latvian, Lithuanian and Estonian defence ministers together watched international military exercises, called "Silver Arrow," that aim to prepare NATO's eFP forces for joint defence operations, according to the defence ministry in Warsaw.

While in Latvia on Monday, the Polish defence minister also met with Polish soldiers serving in that country as part of NATO's eFP mission.

(gs)

Source: PAP, dzieje.pl

Click on the audio player above to listen to a report by Radio Poland's Michał Owczarek.