News2019.08.23 09:00

Europe can no longer blindly rely on US for its security, Lithuanian president says

BNS 2019.08.23 09:00

Europe can no longer blindly rely on the United States for its security and must take on more responsibility, Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda says.

"It's becoming increasing obvious that Europe can no longer blindly rely on America's generosity and it must itself take on more responsibility for its security," the president said on Thursday, addressing an international conference hosted by ex-Lithuanian President Valdas Adamkus.

Nausėda also spoke against labels and "calling the EU's growing defence capabilities a 'strategic autonomy' or 'Europe's army', as that might do more harm than good in our bid for an effective NATO interoperability".

Nausėda underlined that NATO remains the key and indispensible security guarantee for Europe, and NATO and the European Union's defence capabilities have complement and bolster each other.

US President Donald Trump has been pressing European allies to increase their defence spending. He also previously called NATO absolete, raising concern among European nations.

Lithuania has joined the EU's defence cooperation initiative, PESCO, and is leading the creation of an EU Cyber Rapid Response Force.

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