In the general’s words, the issue will be high on the agenda of the Vilnius meeting between Baltic and Polish chiefs of defence with Supreme Allied Commander Europe (SACEUR) of NATO Allied Command Operations General Philip M. Breedlove.
“It will be stationed in four or five countries, namely, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Poland and Romania,” Žukas told journalists.
In his words, the headquarters in Lithuania will employ between 80 and 120 people and will coordinate the training of Allied soldiers deployed in Lithuania, keep contacts with national army and NATO headquarters in Brunssum or Szczecin.
The Lithuanian general said the US company of troops will remain in Lithuania “as long as the situation requires”. It will interact with two more companies, i.e., one from Lithuania and one from another NATO country.
In Lithuania, the international headquarters should be established from the Duke Vaidotas Mechanized Infantry Battalion.
“We have done all of our homework. We just need them to say who will be the leader, who will be the commander and what share is formed from troops of other countries. I believe this should be finalized within a month. I believe the headquarters will be stationed in Lithuania before the end of this year,” said Žukas.
He said the international headquarters will step up Lithuania’s security.
“There will be the international headquarters, which will be a direct link to the NATO leadership. The headquarters will be directly subordinate to NATO’s leadership. It will train troops who will be in Lithuania. This all contributes to our increased security,” the chief of defence concluded.