Opening remarks

by the President of Lithuania, Mrs.Dalia Grybauskaitė, at the NATO Military Committee Conference in Vilnius, Lithuania

  • 19 Sep. 2014 - 21 Sep. 2014
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  • Last updated: 20 Sep. 2014 10:51

President of Lithuania, Mrs. Dalia Grybauskaitė‡ addressing NATO's Chiefs of Defence at the MC Conference 2014

Dear Generals,
Ladies and Gentlemen,

I am glad to welcome you all in Lithuania at the meeting that follows the Wales Summit.

Two weeks ago, in Wales, all the leaders agreed who is the aggressor in Europe today.

Sadly but the price for eyes-opening was far too high ‒ occupation of a sovereign countries territory, repeated violations of international law and ‒ most important - many innocent lives. For some of us, it was a big surprise that a country, which we treated as a partner, acts beyond agreements, treaties and common values.

We cannot allow ourselves to be surprised again ‒ because costs will be higher than ever.

First ‒ we need a clear deterrence ‒ here the political will is as much important as time and geography.

That's why in Wales we have agreed upon Readiness Action Plan.

We understand that unpreparedness cannot be our strategic weakness.
Second ‒ we must implement the plan ‒ to increase readiness of our forces, to develop infrastructure for deployments and to improve planning.

Third ‒ you, our chiefs of defence, are the best at transforming decisions to plans, and plans to action.

In Wales, we have decided to create a very high readiness joint task force and command and control elements.

These are important decisions and they require development of resources, capabilities, and better planning.
Fourth ‒ we are limited in time. Security environment has essentially changed already half a year ago.
In conclusion, I am absolutely sure that NATO is and will remain a source of stability and security in our transatlantic area.

When the security situation changes ‒ we have concrete tasks to fulfill.

Our success depends purely on us.

Wish you deep discussions, smart solutions, fast decisions, and a safer future for us all.