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Lithuania president to Blinken: Deterrence is no longer enough against Russia

US Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken (2ndL) meets with Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda (2ndR) at the Presidentura in Vilnius, Lithuania on March 7, 2022. (OLIVIER DOULIERY / Pool / AFP)
US Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken (2ndL) meets with Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda (2ndR) at the Presidentura in Vilnius, Lithuania on March 7, 2022. (OLIVIER DOULIERY / Pool / AFP)

VILNIUS, Lithuania — Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda tells US Secretary of State Antony Blinken that Russia poses a long-term threat to Europe and that deterrence is no longer enough.

“Unfortunately, the worsening security situation in the Baltic region is of great concern for all of us and around the world,” Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda tells Blinken.

“Russia’s reckless aggression against Ukraine once again proves that it is a long-term threat to European security, the security of our alliance,” he says.

Nauseda says that a policy of deterrence was no longer enough and that “forward defense” was now needed.

He predicts that “Putin will not stop in Ukraine…. It is our collective duty as a nation to help all Ukrainians with all means available. By saying all, I mean, indeed all means, if we want to avoid the Third World War. The choice is in our hands.”

Blinken is on a lightning visit to the three Baltic states that are increasingly on edge as they watch Russia press ahead with its invasion of Ukraine.

Later in the day he will travel to Riga, Latvia, where he will meet with Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid, before visiting Tallinn, Estonia, on Tuesday.

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