Estonia to extend mission of unmanned aircraft crew in Lithuania

25.09.2021 | 00:00

Stenbock House, 25 September 2021 – Estonia has taken the decision to extend the mission of the Defence Forces unmanned aircraft crew in Lithuania until the end of October.
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“Estonia, along with other Member States of the European Union and its allies, has been unwavering in its support for Lithuania in responding to the hybrid attacks organised by the Lukashenka regime, and we will continue to stand by them in the future,” said Prime Minister Kaja Kallas. “We are primed to respond very promptly to any changes on the external border of the European Union and NATO. We are working together to stem the illegal flow of migrants at its source, in the countries of origin.”

The intelligence gathered by the Defence Forces improves the overview that the Lithuanian authorities have of what is occurring in the border zone.

“We can see that the Lukashenka regime is continuing to take steps to destabilise the situation and is creating further opportunities to use migration as a weapon,” remarked Minister of Defence Kalle Laanet, who says that a hybrid attack is being waged against Lithuania, Latvia and Poland with the aim of influencing Western governments.

Assistance is being provided by Estonia at the request of Lithuania. To date, three unmanned aircraft crews of the Estonian Defence Forces have operated in the country.

Estonia’s contribution encompasses both the security and humanitarian fields. On the basis of a bilateral agreement, a 10-member ESTPOL5 police unit is currently in Lithuania, which is also being provided with assistance by Estonia in the form of technology and expertise via FRONTEX (the European Border and Coast Guard Agency).  Estonia has also sent barbed wire and camp supplies to Lithuania to protect the border. As of September, Estonia had provided assistance to the value of more than 800,000 euros.

Government Communication Office