On February 9 Chief of Defence of Norway Gen Harald Sunde will conduct a formal two-day visit in Lithuania during which he is planned to meet with Minister of National Defence Rasa Jukneviciene, Lithuanian Chief of Defence Lt Gen Arvydas Pocius, other representatives of the Lithuanian Armed Forces, and visit the Energy Security centre, Ministry of Defence reports.
Leadership of the Ministry of National Defence of Lithuania and the Lithuanian Armed Forces will discuss with the Norwegian CHOD the Baltic-Nordic cooperation initiatives and priorities, bilateral military cooperation between Lithuania and Norway, contribution of the countries to multinational military capabilities, and opportunities of cooperation in combat training and preparation.
Lithuania and Norway have been developing tight cooperation in defence policy planning and joint projects because both countries maintain similar stance to the transatlantic relations, political and security affairs, both countries are connected by NATO membership, participation in joint international forums, and geographical proximity. Several tens of specialists from the Lithuanian Air and Land Forces and the Lithuanian Navy, the Lithuanian Special Operations Forces and logistics units have been annually involved in a variety of exercise and training events in Norway in the recent decade.
Norway was the first western country to donate weapons o Lithuania. In 1994 coast guard AD-STORM class ship (renamed as Dzukas P31) was handed over to Lithuania on a gratuitous basis, in 1998 an additional 40 mm anti-aircraft cannon was added. In 2001 the Lithuanian Armed Forces acquired on the installment plan two more ships of the same class (AD-STORM) from Norway. In 2004 an agreement was signed on the transfer of Norway’s short range air defence systems RBS-70 to Lithuania. In April 2006 Lithuania acquired a Vidar class mine countermeasures vessel from Norway and an instryctions course for the ship crew.
Note for the media: at 13hrs05 a formal welcome ceremony will be held in front of the Ministry of National Defence for Chief of Defence of Norway Gen Harold Sunde.