Candidate to head State Security Department says it must assume leadership in preventing threats

Darius Jauniškis
DELFI / Mindaugas Ažušilis

“Today we cannot passively observe the intensive arming of armies and the major efforts to undermine our resistance through economic, cultural, information and other types of pressure,” Jauniškis, the current commander of the Lithuanian Army’s Special Operations Forces, told parliament.

“All these threats allow us to review our priorities and place more focus on state security. Observing the situation is a necessary but insufficient action to ensuring state security. We need to prevent threats by way of various legitimate methods. The State Security Department should take a leading role in the area,” he added.

Jauniškis said the decision to be a candidate for security chief was determined by “clear understanding of the threats Lithuania faces these days”.

“We are fully-fledged members of NATO and have been successfully participating in activities of the combat bloc for 11 years, therefore, we feel rather safe. However, Lithuania feels pressure today, we feel various threats: information, cyber, spying and blackmailing. We feel attempts to undermine the order in Lithuania and the international arena, the countries that are interested in changing the established practices are playing by the rules that are not democratic,” Jauniškis said.

Jauniškis, who has been heading the Lithuanian army’s Special Operations Forces since 2008, was proposed for security chief by President Dalia Grybauskaitė.

If approved by the parliament, Jauniškis, 47, should replace Gediminas Grina in the position. Grina’s term is expiring later this month. The parliament has already approved for discussion the draft resolution on his dismissal from office.

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