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News archive (2004 - 11)

Servicemen will have their church in Vilnius

On Tuesday, 23 November there will be High Mass celebrated at St Ignotas Church for first time after a fifty-year period break. St Ignotas Church will be the main church of the Ordinary of the Lithuanian Armed Forces. After the reconstruction, the facilities of the church, which under Soviet times were turned into a film-studio, picture gallery, rehearsal site, will be handed over to servicemen of the Lithuanian Armed Forces. From now on Lithuanian servicemen will have their spiritual centre.

The dedication ceremony will be run by Ordinary Bishop Eugenijus Bartulis. The service of the Eucharist will be attended by President Valdas Adamkus of the Republic of Lithuania, Prime Minister of the Government of the Republic of Lithuania, Algirdas Brazauskas, Minister of the Lithuanian Armed Forces, Linas Linkevičius, Commander of the Lithuanian Armed Forces, Major General Valdas Tutkus, Apostolic Nuncio to Lithuania, Archbishop Peter Stephen Zurbriggen, Cardinal Audrys Juozas Bačkis, Archbishop Sigitas Tamkevičius, guests from chaplain offices of foreign armed forces.

Lithuania will take part in developing EU Battle Groups

Lithuania will take part in the development of Battle Groups of European Union's Rapid Response Force, that was the position of Lithuania expressed by Undersecretary of the Ministry of National Defence at a meeting of EU Ministers of Defence in Brussels.


During the meeting, EU member states announced their plans concerning their involvement in the Battle Groups project.


Lithuania will discuss issues covering the development of a battle group along with Poland, Germany, Slovakia and Latvia. Such a joint group under Polish control will become operational after the year 2009. The total number of EU battle groups will be 13. The first two groups are expected to be formed already next year, while another two – in 2006. After 2007 the EU will form nine more battle groups.

23rd November – the Lithuanian Servicemen's Day

On 23rd November we will celebrate the Lithuanian Servicemen's Day. This year we will also mark the 86th anniversary of the Lithuanian Armed Forces.


The year of 2004 is a historical year both to Lithuania and the Lithuanian Armed Forces. Lithuania's accession to NATO has not only crowned the country's efforts but also acknowledged the country's bid to become a reliable and equal partner.


Accession to the defence Alliance provides the country with new security guarantees: from the very first days of the membership, aircraft of NATO allies have undertaken to safeguard the Baltic airspace and in the event of an aggression they would ensure defence of the country.

Commander of the Lithuanian Armed Forces to attend meetings of EU and NATO Chiefs of Defence in Brussels

On Saturday, 14 November Commander of the Lithuanian Armed Forces Major General Valdas Tutkus left for Brussels, Belgium, where he will take part meetings of EU and NATO Chiefs of Defence.

On Monday, 15 November the meeting of EU Chiefs of Defence will address issues covering generation, structural issues of the EU Reaction Brigade. The meeting will also focus on the EU-led international Operation ALTHEA in Bosnia and Herzegovina, which is scheduled to commence at the end of this year. The EU force will be deployed to replace NATO Stabilisation Force (NATO SFOR).

On Wednesday, 17 December Major General Tutkus is scheduled to take part in a meeting of NATO Military Committee.

Lithuanian airspace to be safeguarded by air defence armaments donated by Norway

On Monday, 15 November an official ceremony will be held at the Air Defence Battalion when short-range air defence missile system RBS-70 will be handed over by Norway to Lithuania. The equipment to be received by the Lithuanian Armed Forces free of charge is estimated at approximately 135 million Litas.

Between October-November of this year, a dispatch including 21 short range anti-aircraft missiles RBS-70, Mk-1 missiles, 5 training simulators, as well as survey radar systems Giraffe IV, others spare parts was handed over to the Air Defence Battalion, situated in Mumaiciai, near the country's northern city of Siauliai. The handed over equipment is brand new.


The received RBS-70 anti-aircraft system will be used to safeguard the Ignalina Nuclear Power Plant and other strategic objects.

NATO experts give positive evaluation to military reform of the Lithuanian Armed Forces

NATO experts have ended their mission in Lithuania, giving a positive evaluation to the reform of the Lithuanian Armed Forces, an excellent evaluation to the country's national defence planning system and to the plans to have more than 10% of forces being deployable and sustainable by the end of 2014.


That was the verdict of the NATO expert team made at the final meeting on 9 November. The meeting was attended by the head of NATO expert team, NATO Deputy Secretary General for Defence Planning Policy John Colston, Lithuanian Minister of National Defence, Linas Linkevičius, and Undersecretary of the Lithuanian Ministry of National Defence, Renatas Norkus. The NATO expert delegation was on the mission in Lithuania on 7-9 November.


NATO experts also gave a positive evaluation to the participation of Lithuanian military personnel in international operations, the country's commitment to ensure collective security, co-operation of the Baltic States in the field of defence.

National Defence System leadership to visit troops in Afghanistan

On Wednesday, 10 November Lithuanian Minister of National Defence, Linas Linkevičius, and Commander of the Lithuanian Armed Force, Major General Valdas Tutkus, left for Afghanistan to visit Lithuanian troops serving on missions in the country.

State Secretary of the Lithuanian Ministry of National Defence Valdemaras Sarapinas, Undersecretary of the Lithuanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs Dalius Čekuolis also left for a visit to Afghanistan.

During the visit, the Lithuanian delegation is expected to meet with senior authorities of Afghanistan in the capital city of Kabul and the military command of the international coalition deployed in the country.

Change of command to take place at the Lithuanian Air Base

On Tuesday, 9 November the Air Base of the Lithuanian Air Force will host a change of command ceremony.

The outgoing commander of the Air Base Major Devis Martusevičius will be replaced by Chief of Staff of the Air Base, Major Artūras Balynas. Major Martusevičius leaves his post to assume his new assignment as a staff officer at NATO Air North Headquarters in Ramstein, Germany.

The new Commander of the Air Base, Lithuanian Air Force, Major Balynas is 37. He has commenced his military career in 1993 when he was posted to act as a commander of Chain Fighter Squadron, 2nd Air Base of the Lithuanian Air Force.

NATO expert team to visit Lithuania

On 7-9 November a fifteen member NATO expert team headed by NATO Deputy Secretary General for Defence Planning Policy John Colston will be in Lithuania.

NATO mine countermeasures force to come to Klaipėda

On 5-8 November seven mine-hunters from NATO states and five warships assigned to the BALTRON, a naval squadron of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, will be visiting Lithuania's seaport of Klaipėda.


Two warships from Norway, one each from Germany, Great Britain, the Netherlands, Belgium and Poland will come for an unofficial visit to Lithuania.


The warships will come from the Latvian territorial waters where they attended an annual series of an exercise PASSEX.


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Solution: Fresh Media