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This year Lithuania’s basketball legend A.Sabonis will be sharing his shirt number 11 with NATO – on March 29 Lithuania will mark the 11th anniversary as a member of the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation.

 

We care to commemorate each anniversary of Lithuania’s membership of the Alliance. We held formal events and intellectual discussions and launched publications to celebrate our first decade in NATO a year ago. Although we will have a smaller commemoration this year, marking such a anniversary is a must. Not only because we have a tradition, but rather because the 11th Lithuania’s year in the Alliance has revealed the true NATO’s importance for Lithuania.

 
 Data on interceptions of vessels and aircraft completed near the Baltic States’ borders from 23 to 29 March 2015
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On March 23–29 fighter jets of the NATO Air Policing Mission protecting the Baltic airspace were scrambled twice to intercept aircraft of the Russian Federation in the approaches of the Baltic States’ borders.

 

On March 24 fighter aircraft conducting the NATO Baltic Air Policing Mission from Šiauliai were scrambled two times to identify and escort military aircraft of the Russian Federation. The first scramble was triggered off by two SU-27 Flankers and two TU-22 bombers. The planes were coming from the mainland of the Russian Federation and heading for Kaliningrad over the neutral waters of the Baltic Sea. None of them were flying according to flight plans submitted in advance, used on-board transponders or maintained radio communication.

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 Drafting into the Mandatory Military Service to begin in May
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Minister of National Defence Juozas Olekas has signed an ordinance setting the beginning date of this years’ draft into the Continuous Mandatory Initial Military Service to be May 11. On that day the lists of this year’s conscripts will be compiled under supervision of representatives of civil society, and call-up notices will begin being sent. Calling up 3 thousand young people has been scheduled for this year, a part of them are expected to join voluntarily, and the remaining part will be enrolled on a mandatory basis.

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 Over 1.5 thousand of runners commamorated Lithuania's NATO accession in Runway Run 2015
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As Lithuania was celebrating the 11th anniversary in NATO, over 1.5 thousand of runners outbraved adverse weather and surmounted the symbolic 3 kilometres on the runway of the Šiauliai Air Base on March 28. All the way Eurofighter Typhoons of the Italian Air Force were flying by and keeping the runners' spirits up.

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 Lithuania and Germany will enhance cooperation in the area of defence industry
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At a meeting in Berlin (Germany) on March 26 Defence Policy Director of the Ministry of National Defence Dr. Vaidotas Urbelis and Director General for Security and Defence Policy of the Federal Ministry of Defence Géza Andreas von Geyr underlined that Lithuania and Germany saw each other as essential partners for defence cooperation.

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 Runway Run 2015 will be held to mark the 11th anniversary of joining NATO
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On March 28 the Air Base of the Lithuanian Air Force at Šiauliai will host a run on the runway of military aircraft  that is already becoming traditional and is the only of its kind in Lithuania– Runway Run 2015.

 

The event marks the 25th anniversary of the restoration of Lithuania’s statehood and the 11th anniversary of Lithuania’s NATO accession.

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 12th rotation of the National Support Element welcomed home after the deployment in Afghanistan
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On March 25 the 12th rotation of the National Support Element attended a formal homecoming ceremony at the White Hall of the Ministry of National Defence after the deployment to the multinational mission in Afghanistan.

 

Vice Minister of National Defence Antanas Valys expressed his delight about the fact that participation of Lithuanian soldiers in the mission in Afghanistan is highly valued by NATO allies. “Such an evaluation is becoming even more meaningful in the context of the geopolitical situation calling for concrete actions from our partners. I thank you all for your excellent performance of duties and for glorifying the name of Lithuania in the current day world torn by unrest,” A.Valys said at the ceremony.

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Lithuanian troops and U.S. soldiers deployed for taking part in combined exercise in Lithuania are involved in intense training. Photo credit: A.Pliadis
Photo of the day

 
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Solution: Fresh Media