|Last updated: 02-Feb-2004 12:28||7 Invitees - Lithuania|
January 13 Soviet military action against the country’s independence. Fourteen Lithuanians die when paratroopers open fire and tanks run over peaceful protestors outside the TV tower in Vilnius.
February 11 NATO member Iceland recognizes Lithuanian independence.
July 29 The Treaty on the Foundations of Inter-State Relations between Lithuania and Russia, recognizing Lithuania’s independence, signed in Moscow
September 17 Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia are admitted to the United Nations.
March 13-16 The first visit by a NATO Secretary General, Manfred Wörner, to the Baltic States takes place at the invitation of the Governments of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia.
April 10 The first meeting of the NATO Military Committee in Cooperation Session with Chiefs of Defence and General Staff of the Central and Eastern European States is held.
May 11 First visit of the Foreign Ministers of the Baltic States to NATO HQ.
February 9 AFNORTH Commander Gen. Garry Johnson visits Lithuania.
August 31 Russia completes the withdrawal of its troops from Lithuania.
December 15 Presidents of the Baltic States announce their commitment to Baltic-Nordic cooperation and declare the goal of NATO membership as being in the best security interests of their countries.
January 4 In a letter to NATO Secretary General Manfred Wörner, President Algirdas Brazauskas officially requests Lithuanian membership in NATO.
January 27 Lithuania joins the Partnership for Peace Programme and signs the PfP Framework Document at NATO HQ.
August First Lithuanian infantry platoon (LITPLA-1) deployed to international operation (UNPROFOR II in Croatia) within a Danish battalion.
May 2 Lithuania’s first Planning and Review Process (PARP) is approved at a NATO Political-Military Committee + 1 meeting.
August 1 The Lithuanian Mission to NATO is established.
January 16 Presidents of the United States, Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia sign the U.S.- Baltic Charter in Washington. The main goals are to support the full integration of the Baltic States into European and trans-Atlantic structures.
January 14 The Parliament approves a plan for increasing the state defense budget to 2% of the GDP over a two-year period.
April A NATO Information and international security library is opened at Martynas Mazvydas national library in Vilnius.
April 23-25 NATO leaders launch the Membership Action Plan at the Washington Summit, specifically designed to provide advice and feedback to countries aspiring to join the Alliance.
May 18-19 Nine Foreign Ministers of the NATO aspirant countries establish the Vilnius Group in the capital city of Lithuania during a conference on ''NATO's Role in the Changing Security Environment in Europe". The ministers adopt a Joint Declaration on NATO Enlargement. NATO Secretary General George Robertson participates at the Vilnius conference.
January 25 Ms. Ginte Damusis is appointed as Ambassador of Lithuania to NATO and the WEU.
May 10-11 The Vilnius Group enlarges by admitting Croatia and becomes the Vilnius 10 at a meeting of Prime Ministers in Bratislava.
May 23 Lithuanian political parties in Parliament conclude an agreement on defense policy, which mandates that 2 per cent of Lithuania’s GDP be committed for defense expenditures through 2004.
May 27-31 The NATO Parliamentary Assembly holds its Spring Session in Vilnius with the participation of NATO Secretary General George Robertson.
September 11 Lithuania condemns the acts of terror in the U.S. and announces its readiness to provide practical assistance.
September 12 Within hours of the North Atlantic Council’s decision to invoke Article V, Lithuania delivers a statement on behalf of the Vilnius Group agreeing that the September 11 attack against the United States was an attack not only against the U.S., but on our common values. The Vilnius Group countries pledge their active support in the fight against terrorism.
January 17 During a meeting with President Valdas Adamkus, U.S. President George W. Bush affirms U.S. support for NATO enlargement for “all those nations ready to meet NATO requirements and to contribute to common security ”.
May 28 The Parliament adopts a National Security Strategy reiterating NATO and EU membership as strategic goals.
November 21-22 Lithuania, as well as Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia, is invited to start accession negotiations with NATO.
November 22-23 U.S. President George W. Bush pays an official visit to Lithuania. Before thousands of well-wishers at Town Hall Square in Vilnius, George W. Bush states that “anyone who would choose Lithuania as an enemy has also made an enemy of the United States of America. In the face of aggression, the brave people of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia will never again stand alone. ”
January 10 Lithuania begins the first round of accession talks with NATO officials in Brussels.
March 17 Minister of Foreign Affairs Antanas Valionis sends a letter to NATO Secretary General George Robertson confirming Lithuania’s willingness to accept all obligations and commitments stemming from the North Atlantic Treaty and to meet the requirements of NATO membership.
March 26 Permanent Representatives of the 19 NATO member countries sign Protocols of Accession, paving the way for Lithuania and other NATO invitees to join the Alliance.