Far-right extremism is a growing threat in Lithuania, according to the country's State Security Department (VSD) which says it had to deal with cases of radicalisation.
Lithuanian intelligence bodies published the yearly National Threat Assessment report on Tuesday:
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“We have already had cases when people were radicalised,” Darius Jauniškis, the VSD director, told journalists on Tuesday after presenting the latest intelligence assessment on threats to national security.
“Their brains were affected to such an extent that people become inadequate in their pursuit of goals, and here I am speaking about far-right extremism which seems to be more dangerous than terrorism,” he added.
Asked how the agency dealt with the cases of far-right radicalisation, Jauniškis responded that they were “neutralised”.
In their annual report, the VSD and the military intelligence maintain that the terrorism threat level in Lithuania remains low, even though there is a growing threat of acts of terror committed by far-right extremists in Europe.
“Tendencies in Europe are worrying, as far-right extremism is a rising wave and everyone starts paying more attention to it,” Jauniškis said, “and we should also monitor the situation.”
The intelligence report states that, over the last few years, groups and individuals promoting right-wing extremist ideologies have become more active worldwide. Proponents of these ideologies are perpetrating more terrorist attacks and ideologically motivated crimes.
Many attempts to commit such crimes get thwarted by intelligence or law enforcement agencies and do not gain public resonance.