'Vilnius Fortress': Patriot batteries and thousands of soldiers to protect leaders at NATO summit | International
The annual NATO summit is held in geopolitical circumstances —the largest war conflagration in Europe since 1945— and in a very special geographical location —Vilnius, the capital of Lithuania, a few tens of kilometers from Belarus and less than 200 from Russia. Accordingly, extraordinary are the security measures adopted to protect the meeting, which is expected to bring together some 40 heads of state and government (the 31 allies, plus other guests such as Sweden, Ukraine or several Asian democracies).
Upon landing this Monday at the Vilnius airport, the deployment was very evident. Batteries of German Armed Forces Patriot air defense systems can be seen alongside the runway, some pointed towards the Russian enclave of Kaliningrad, others in the direction of Belarus/Russia. A flag made clear the ownership of these long-range military equipment.
But this is not the only special contribution of the allies to the security of the summit. Spain has provided medium-range Nasams air defense units; France, Caesar artillery pieces; various allies have provided fighter jets; London and Paris, defense against drones; Berlin and Warsaw, heliborne special task forces; the NATO joint force is operational (task force) against chemical, biological, nuclear risks; A total of 16 allies have sent a thousand soldiers who will join the 3,000 soldiers from the Baltic country activated for the occasion, according to the Lithuanian authorities.
Lithuania, of course, is resorting to the maximum of its possibilities. Among other things, it has tripled border control activities. In 2021, thousands of migrants from mainly the Middle East arrived at the border with Belarus, in an episode that the West considers to be a deliberate destabilization attempt perpetrated by Minsk. Belarus denies the allegations.
As in other big summits, the city center is full of security forces and with traffic cuts. Lithuanian authorities report that some 1,500 police officers are on duty for the appointment. But the military dimension of the protection efforts is exceptional, in keeping with the challenge that is so close, a Belarus willing to welcome Russian nuclear weapons and Wagner mercenaries, and a spiral of conflict that can have multiple derivatives, not only in a conventional sense. , but also hybrid.
The Lithuanian authorities – and those of the other Baltic countries, Latvia and Estonia – hope that this one-off reinforcement represents a new step on the path of large permanent deployments of the allies that reinforce their fragile defenses. In this sense, Germany declared in June its willingness to permanently transfer 4,000 soldiers to Lithuania, for which the necessary facilities are now being set up.
Join EL PAÍS to follow all the news and read without limits.
Since the Russian invasion of Ukraine, NATO has heavily strengthened so-called forward defenses on the eastern flank, although these are largely rotating deployments involving many allies.
Follow all the international information on Facebook and Twitteror in our weekly newsletter.
Subscribe to continue reading
Read without limits
- Allow me to introduce myself. I am Nathan Rivera, a dedicated journalist who has had the privilege of writing for the online newspaper Today90. My journey in the world of journalism has been a testament to the power of dedication, integrity, and passion.
My story began with a relentless thirst for knowledge and an innate curiosity about the events shaping our world. I graduated with honors in Investigative Journalism from a renowned university, laying the foundation for what would become a fulfilling career in the field.
What sets me apart is my unwavering commitment to uncovering the truth. I refuse to settle for superficial answers or preconceived narratives. Instead, I constantly challenge the status quo, delving deep into complex issues to reveal the reality beneath the surface. My dedication to investigative journalism has uncovered numerous scandals and shed light on issues others might prefer to ignore.
I am also a staunch advocate for press freedom. I have tirelessly fought to protect the rights of journalists and have faced significant challenges in my quest to inform the public truthfully and without constraints. My courage in defending these principles serves as an example to all who believe in the power of journalism to change the world.
Throughout my career, I have been honored with numerous awards and recognitions for my outstanding work in journalism. My investigations have changed policies, exposed corruption, and given a voice to those who had none. My commitment to truth and justice makes me a beacon of hope in a world where misinformation often prevails.
At Today90, I continue to be a driving force behind journalistic excellence. My tireless dedication to fair and accurate reporting is an invaluable asset to the editorial team. My biography is a living testament to the importance of journalism in our society and a reminder that a dedicated journalist can make a difference in the world.
- Celebrities05/12/2023Superior analysis makes the businessman strong; 35 years of professional journalism
- Celebrities05/12/2023Kiss is immortalized with digital avatars
- Latin America05/12/2023Sergio Gutman celebrates 40 years of career with exhibition; where to see it
- World News05/12/2023COP28 proposes a Global Balance that toughens the language on fossil fuels