Baltic ministers: US-China conflict must not overshadow Russia threat

Minister of Foreign Affairs Eva-Maria Liimets (Center).
Minister of Foreign Affairs Eva-Maria Liimets (Center). Source: Siim Lõvi /ERR

The U.S. presidential administration must not lose sight of the threat posed by Russia amid America's new focus on China, the Baltic foreign ministers told Newsweek in an interview.

Latvian Foreign Minister Edgars Rinkevics, Estonian Foreign Minister Eva-Maria Liimets, and Lithuanian Foreign Affairs Vice Minister Mantas Adomėnas said the U.S. and its NATO allies must stay alert to challenges from both Moscow and Beijing or risk encouraging fresh aggression.

"While addressing one challenge, let's not forget about another," Rinkevics told Newsweek. "Otherwise one morning we are going to wake up with a very unpleasant surprise, and then we will be again trying to understand who missed what."

Liimets (Center) told the publication the continued U.S. focus in Eastern Europe is a priority for Tallinn.

"Our focus at the moment is very much on NATO, and the NATO strategic concept that would assess the current security situation properly and provide working methods for the organization to couple with this security situation," she told Newsweek.

Last week, Estonian Institute of Foreign Relations researcher Frank Jüris told ERR if the world's great powers pivot to focusing on China and pay less attention to Russia it will make Estonia and the region less secure.

"Inevitably, our security situation would deteriorate and weaken as a result," he said.


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Editor: Helen Wright

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