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Blinken says US will ‘defend every inch of NATO territory’

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken speaks during a joint media conference with Lithuania's Foreign Minister Gabrielius Landsbergis at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Vilnius, Lithuania, March 7, 2022 (AP Photo/Mindaugas Kulbis)
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken speaks during a joint media conference with Lithuania's Foreign Minister Gabrielius Landsbergis at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Vilnius, Lithuania, March 7, 2022 (AP Photo/Mindaugas Kulbis)

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken says that US commitment to the NATO defense pact is “sacrosanct” and American resolve on the matter should not be doubted.

Blinken assures Lithuania of NATO protection and American support as he begins a lightning visit to the three Baltic states that are increasingly on edge as Russia presses ahead with its invasion of Ukraine.

The former Soviet republics of Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia are all NATO members and Blinken is aiming to reassure them of their security in the event Russia chooses to expand its military operations.

“We are bolstering our shared defense so that we and our allies are prepared,” Blinken says, stressing that the US commitment to NATO’s mutual defense pact is “sacrosanct.”

“We will defend every inch of NATO territory if it comes under attack,” he says. “No one should doubt our readiness, no one should doubt our resolve.”

Blinken will also meet with Foreign Minister Yair Lapid while in Latvia.

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