Lithuania to send experts to Ukraine’s Defence Ministry

Juozas Olekas
DELFI / Tomas Vinickas

“We have agreed to send our experts not only to army units but also to the ministry to share our experience of being a NATO member,” Olekas told BNS by phone from Ukraine following a meeting with his Ukrainian counterpart.

In his words, Vilnius plans to delegate “several” experts who would include both military and civilians. They would help to “resolve problems arising on the strategic level,” Olekas said.

The Lithuanian defence minister also said he and the Ukrainian minister discussed the possibility for Ukrainian troops to study in Lithuania, and also the treatment of Ukrainian troops in Lithuania.

The meetings also touched upon the trilateral Lithuanian-Polish-Ukrainian brigade. In his words, the countries hope to “as early as this summer start joint work at the headquarters” situated in the Polish city of Lublin.

According to the Lithuanian defense minister, the existing situation in eastern Ukraine is relatively peaceful, despite almost daily violations of the truce.

“The situation is calmer, compared to what we had before the truce declaration. Unfortunately, violations take place daily,” he said.

Ukraine is watching the supply of arms to separatist and their training, Olekas said.

UN figures show the ongoing war in eastern Ukraine has led to the death of over 6,000 people. The West claim Russia is supplying pro-Russian separatists with arms and helping them to fight with Ukrainian government forces, which Moscow denies.

Meanwhile, American paratroopers on Monday started training Ukrainian government forces, sparking Moscow’s resentment.

Lithuania has sent undisclosed weaponry elements to Ukraine.

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