Trump sends US Vice President to Baltic States to demonstrate solidarity and support
«The president sent me here so that I would say this – we are with you. We are with Estonian, Latvian and Lithuanian people and countries. And we will always be together,» said US Vice President Mike Pence on Monday, 31 July.
«It is a big privilege for me to be here and pass on a very simple message from US President Donald Trump,» said Pence during a press-conference with Baltic presidents.
USA and Baltic States are prepared to expand their strategic relations in security field, said Latvian President Raimonds Vejonis after a conversation with Pence.
He and Pence discussed ways of strengthening cooperation with Baltic States in anti-air defence, as well as prevention of hybrid threats and threats to the information space.
The president said USA is the closest strategic partner for Baltic States. Over the course of the past six months, political dialogue between USA and Baltic States has reached a never before seen intensity, said Vejonis.
«All the meetings that have taken place offer confidence about the unchanged stance of USA towards NATO and readiness to defend Baltic States. We highly value the presence of American troops in Baltic States, as well as the commitment from USA to increase defence funding for Europe’s defence,» said Vejonis.
Latvia’s president also confirmed that Latvia will fulfill its objective and increase defence budget to 2% of GDP next year.
Baltic presidents and US vice president also discussed economic cooperation. Vejonis welcomed the plans from USA to start exports of liquefied natural gas to Baltic and Central European countries to improve the region’s energy security and diversify supplies of energy resources.