President of the Republic of Lithuania

Security threats require immediate and united response

2017-06-12

Monday, 12 June, Vilnius  President Dalia Grybauskaitė met with President Borut Pahor of Slovenia who came on an official visit to Lithuania. The Presidents discussed topical EU issues, cooperation in NATO and bilateral relations. Special focus was placed on cyber security and response to hybrid threats.

According to the President, Slovenia understands the threats that our region faces and helps to counter them. Lithuania appreciates Slovenia’s contribution to the security of our region and its firm position on sanctions against Russia. Slovenian troops who will soon join the NATO multinational battalion in Latvia are a symbol of allied unity.

The meeting focused on cooperation in NATO and preparations for the NATO summit to be held in 2018. The President pointed out that the biggest threats to NATO were emerging along its eastern flank. Therefore, regularly updated defense plans for the Baltic states based on concrete military capabilities, decisions on regional air defense, measures to prevent military isolation in the Baltic and Black Seas, and a more rapid decision-making process within NATO were the steps necessary to ensure the security of the region and of the whole Alliance.

The two Presidents also discussed response to cyber and hybrid threats. The President underlined that such threats required immediate and united response, and that defense capabilities had to be reinforced not only on land, at sea and in the air, but also in cyber space.

Lithuania has already achieved rapid and tangible results in ensuring cyber-security: a national cyber security center is operating in Vilnius, cyber defense plans have been approved, regular national cyber security exercises are being held. This makes Lithuania’s experience valuable to Slovenia that is currently implementing a cyber security reform.

The Presidents exchanged views on ways of strengthening cooperation between Lithuania and Slovenian cyber security authorities as well as developing a united response to cyber threats by the EU and NATO. Dalia Grybauskaitė invited Slovenian specialists to attend the exercise Cyber Shield in Lithuania. Tomorrow the Presidents will visit the National Cyber Security Center of Lithuania.

Stable and open EU neighborhood is a common interest of Lithuania and Slovenia. Both countries support an open door policy for those nations that aspire to join the EU and NATO and are implementing the necessary reforms. The Presidents discussed support to the EU’s eastern and southern neighbors fighting against corruption and expanding transparent and democratic governance. President Dalia Grybauskaitė underscored that the Astravyets nuclear power plant currently constructed by Belarus with disregard to the international nuclear safety standards was incompatible with good and safe neighborhood policies.

Cooperation in the EU in addressing migration challenges and ensuring the security of the member states was among the other issues addressed at the meeting. When Slovenia was confronted with a huge inflow of migrants in 2015, Lithuania was the first to respond to its request for assistance and delegated 60 police officers for maintaining public order. Lithuania and Slovenia – both of whom protect the external borders of the Schengen area – seek to ensure a more effective external border control of the Community.

The Presidents also discussed bilateral economic relations. Trade between Lithuania and Slovenia grew by five percent over the last year. Five Lithuanian companies export lasers to Slovenia. However, there still exists a large untapped potential for cooperation in information technologies, life sciences, pharmaceutical and chemical industries, and agriculture.

The two Presidents exchanged gifts. Dalia Grybauskaitė presented Borut Pahor, who is actively engaged in sports, with a field and track T-shirt and an amber artwork. She received a smart wrist device as a gift from the Slovenian President.

The President was Slovenia on an official visit in the March of last year.

Press Service of the President

Last updated 2017.06.12 17:36

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