Tuesday, April 3, White House, Washington, D.C.– President Trump was hosting the leaders of three Baltic states today – Kersti Kaljulaid, President of Estonia, Raimonds Vejonis, President of Latvia, and Dalia Grybauskaitė, President of Lithuania.
“We are very protective of the Baltic region”, President Trump said, “We have great friends there”.
Taking part in the summit meeting were also U.S. Secretary of Defense James Mattis, Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross, Secretary of Energy Rick Perry, and Acting Secretary of State John J. Sullivan.
The four presidents adopted a joint political declaration reaffirming the ironclad commitment of all four countries to Article 5 of the Washington Treaty, which defines the core principle of NATO’s defense: All for one, one for all.
The United States commits to continue the deployment of forces to the Baltic States. It was also agreed to explore and find solutions to air defense, bilaterally and in NATO. (see full text of Declaration)
“Lithuania heard very concrete U.S. guarantees. It means that the bond uniting us remains strong and that the security of the Baltic countries and the United States is indivisible,” the President of Lithuania underlined.
According to Dalia Grybauskaitė, “active and clearly visible U.S. engagement and military presence in the region is in the vital interest of Lithuania. The results of today’s meeting show that in case of crisis, Lithuania can expect America’s military support not only within the framework of NATO, but also on a direct bilateral basis”.
Among the other issues discussed at the meeting was energy security and options for importing U.S. gas. Lithuania was among the first countries in Europe to bring gas from the United States via the Klaipėda terminal – “an important factor for ensuring safe and diversified supplies and eliminating Gazprom’s influence over domestic political processes” (according to President Grybauskaite).
The Baltic countries and the United States will actively cooperate in cybersecurity, strategic communications and nuclear safety. The four presidents also discussed the situation in Ukraine and other issues.