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US to support Baltic states' ammunition, equipment procurements

Presidents Donald Trump, Dalia Grybauskaitė, Kersti Kaljulaid, and Raimonds Vējonis in Washington, Apr. 3, 2018.
Presidents Donald Trump, Dalia Grybauskaitė, Kersti Kaljulaid, and Raimonds Vējonis in Washington, Apr. 3, 2018. Source: Andrew Harnik/AP Photo/Scanpix

The United States plans to provide nearly $100 million for the procurement of large-caliber ammunition and more than $70 million for training and other equipment to back up the Baltic states' defense and security forces.

The U.S. continues to improve defense and security infrastructure in the Baltic region, strengthen national resilience efforts, and build defense capacity through its security assistance programs, such as FMF (Foreign Military Financing) and IMET (International Military Education and Training).

The Baltic states together traditionally receive about $3.5 million a year in IMET assistance to allow 150 students to attend formal training at military academies in the United States.

U.S. forces cooperate with Baltic troops in a range of advanced multinational training events, including the U.S.-led Saber Strike and Baltops exercises.

More than 5,000 U.S. troops will join multinational forces in this year's Saber Strike exercise, the largest event of its kind to take place in the Baltic region.

In energy security, the U.S. reinforces Baltic efforts to diversify energy sources and increase competitiveness in energy markets.

Recognizing vulnerabilities in Baltic energy infrastructure, the United States will work with key stakeholders in Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania to improve resilience in the Baltic energy sector.

These efforts will include providing expertise to enhance capacities to prevent, detect, thwart, and recover from hostile cyber-attacks; and offering technical assistance to support energy diversification projects, including synchronizing the Baltic and European electric grids.

In addition, the United States will commit three million dollars to work with the three Baltic states to build public and institutional resiliency against disinformation by strengthening independent media outlets, public service broadcasters, and media literacy skills in the region.

In honor of 100 years of Estonian, Latvian, and Lithuanian independence, the United States will bring more than 100 youth from the Baltic states to the United States on U.S.-sponsored exchange programs.

Editor: Dario Cavegn

Source: BNS

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