Europe: As per to the sources, the United States Defense Secretary, Lloyd Austin, will be visiting European countries such as – Belgium, Poland, and Lithuania. This visit has been planned following the rising border tensions between Russia and Ukraine.
As per the statement of the US Department of Defense press release, Austin will be departing to the European countries on February 15, 2022.
“During his visit, he will be meeting – with senior military and government authorities in Belgium, Poland, and Lithuania,” the statement of the press release further informs.
List of officials in these countries, which Austin will be meeting:
- To meet – Allied defense ministers and NATO leadership: to discuss about Russia’s build-up in and around Ukraine border and ensure Alliance is ready to face any present and future challenges.
- To meet – President of the Republic of Poland, Andrzej Duda and Minister of National Defence of Poland – Mariusz Blaszczak: to foster bilateral cooperation in security and deepen the Polish-American partnership.
He will also meet with US and Polish troops at Powidz Air Base to tour the facilities and observe the culture and conditions of the country’s rotational presence there, the media releases adds.
- To meet – President of Lithuania – Gitanas Nauseda, Prime Minister of Lithuania – Ingrida Simonyte, Minister Arvydas Anusauskas, Minister for National Defence of Lithuania: to reaffirm the nation that no matter what, the US will always stand by with Lithuania to strengthen Lithuania armed forces.
The press release adds, “Secretary Austin will meet jointly with the Minister Anusauskas – Kalle Laanet, Minister of Defense of Estonia, and Artis Pabriks, Minister of Defense of Latvia, and will visit with US Service members stationed in Lithuania“.
Russia has so far deployed over 100,000 troops at the Ukraine-Russia border, which has raised concerning alarm by NATO, US and world leaders over Russia’s plan to invade its neighbour country.