President of the Republic of Lithuania

The aggressor must not be appeased

2016-02-13

Saturday, February 13, Munich – President Dalia Grybauskaitė is attending the Munich Security Conference where she delivered a speech in the presidential debate – the main discussion of this conference – on current and future international security policy challenges.

Taking part in the debate were Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, Finnish President Sauli Niinistö, Polish President Andrzej Duda, and President of the European Parliament Martin Schulz.

“History has taught us to never appease the aggressor and yield to military pressures and terrorism. We must act together to respond to the violations of international law committed by a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council. The security of Europe and its future is put at risk by turning a blind eye on Russia’s behavior in Ukraine and Syria,” the President said.

Addressing the most prominent foreign and security policy experts, the President also emphasized that international institutions must be more resolute and respond more quickly to the changing security situation. This is the only way to ensure the security of people in Europe and restore their confidence in European and transatlantic institutions – which means that the NATO summit in Warsaw must make concrete decisions that will help not only to respond to, but also to deter threats.

At the NATO summit in Warsaw, Lithuania and the other countries in the region will seek enhanced deployment of rotational allied military forces and equipment, regional air defense measures as well as an accelerated and effective decision-making mechanism.

According to Dalia Grybauskaitė, countries themselves must also assume responsibility for their security. The strong will of a country and its people to defend their land is the most effective deterrence. Lithuania is continuously increasing its defense budget. The NATO target of spending 2 percent of GDP on national defense should be reached in 2018. Military equipment has been modernized and compulsory military service reinstated.

The Munich Security Conference is held for the 52nd time. From the outset, it has aimed to promote international cooperation, enhance the Euro-Atlantic security system and use the best foreign policy minds to address global challenges.

This year, the conference has also been attended by King Abdullah II of Jordan, French Prime Minister Manuel Valls, Georgia’s Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili, Iraq’s Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, Germany’s Minister for Foreign Affairs Frank-Walter Steinmeier, as well as British and French defense ministers.

Press Service of the President

Last updated 2016.02.13 14:35

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