President of the Republic of Lithuania

New security challenges require joint response from countries

2016-03-29

Tuesday, March 29, Vilnius – President Dalia Grybauskaitė presented a state decoration to Philip M. Breedlove, Commander of U.S. European Command. The Cross of Commander of the Order for Merits to Lithuania was conferred on the General for his special personal contribution and efforts in strengthening the security of our country.

According to the President, the General played a special role in contributing to the security of Lithuania and the Baltic countries. General Philip M. Breedlove was among the first in the Alliance thanks to whom concerns have been raised about the security of NATO’s Eastern members and the Baltic countries. When unrest began in Ukraine, the security of the Baltic countries was rapidly strengthened through his personal efforts by expanding NATO’s air policing mission in Lithuania. The General actively supported the presence of the U.S. military forces in the Baltic region, which is planned to be further expanded.

The Supreme Allied Commander, Europe has also defended robustly the security interests of the Baltic countries on the international arena, in the U.S. Congress, the U.S. Senate and the Pentagon and continuously called on NATO members to place special emphasis on the Baltic countries.

The President points out that the General’s determination, courage and sacrifice in defending the freedom and security of democratic countries are a model example for the whole world. The President thanked the Supreme Allied Commander, Europe for his loyalty to democratic values, friendship and support Lithuania has continuously felt in recent years.

During the meeting, Dalia Grybauskaitė and Philip M. Breedlove discussed the security situation in the region, NATO’s defense plans and air defense.

“Security challenges are not decreasing, they are taking on new forms. Therefore, a joint response from democratic countries remains relevant and particularly important. NATO must not only be well-prepared to respond rapidly, but also to deter effectively from possible new challenges,” the President said.

The state decoration was conferred on Philip M. Breedlove on February 16.

Press Service of the President

Last updated 2016.03.29 13:30

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