Liimets: Secretary of State affirmed continued US commitment to Baltics

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The U.S. secretary of state and the Baltic foreign ministers on March 24. Source: Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken reaffirmed the country's commitment to continued close cooperation with the Baltics over regional issues, NATO, the EU, Russia and China.

Blinken and foreign ministers from Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania met in Brussels on Wednesday.

"With Latvia and Lithuania, we reiterated our support for NATO and the importance of US presence," Estonia's Minister of Foreign Affairs Eva-Maria Liimets (Center) said.

"We must work towards strengthening NATO's defence and deterrence posture, both by reinforcing and increasing Allied military presence in the Baltic States. As Russia's immediate neighbours, we are particularly affected by the threats posed by Russia, and we appreciate the United States consulting us on this issue."

The countries also share concerns over developments in China, such as human rights violations and the security risks of technologies.

Liimets reiterated that Estonia wants to deal with China together with likeminded NATO or EU counties "coordinating and maintaining unified messages and a common policy".

The ministers also discussed the need to support Eastern Partner countries, particularly Georgia, Ukraine and events in Belarus. Additionally, the Three Seas Initiative was raised.

Blinken emphasized the need for continued adaptation through the NATO 2030 initiative. He thanked the foreign ministers for their commitment to revitalizing NATO and for their contributions to the alliance through robust defense spending and deployments to operations abroad.

After the meeting, he tweeted: [It was a] Pleasure speaking with my Baltic counterparts today. We look forward to working with Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania to guarantee security and increase prosperity in Europe and around the world."

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Editor: Helen Wright

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