RIGA, Oct 12 (LETA) - Latvia is already working on preconditions for a comprehensive or total defense system but putting the system in place still requires political support and the involvement of whole society, Defense Minister Raimonds Bergmanis (Greens/Farmers), who is currently visiting Georgia, told LETA by phone.Bergmanis is in Georgia on a working visit this week for Georgia’s defense and security conference. At the conference, the Latvian minister spoke at a panel discussion on the total defense concept and its principles. The minister said that discussions on the concept of total defense are taking place also in Georgia. One of the speakers at the conference was a representative of Finland as this country is a good example of the total defense concept’s implementation. Bergmanis is scheduled to visit Finland in the nearest future to obtain in-depth information on how the system can be implemented.Latvia has defined the creation of the total defense system as one of the goals of the national defense concept, which states that “national defense is unconditional. It is the duty of each citizen to defend the state and actively or passively resist the aggressor”. Bergmanis explained that introducing the total defense system in Latvia requires not only public support and people’s willingness to enlist in the military. It also means involving many different sectors like agriculture, healthcare and education. Although additional funding will be necessary to create the system, money alone will not suffice unless there is also broad public support and involvement, the minister said. “It is not only the army and allies who have to be prepared to defend Latvia. The thinking of each member of society has to change, because everyone must be ready to get involved in national defense so that Latvia can withstand a potential attack,” the minister said.The Latvian Defense Ministry is already taking measures to enlist more volunteers in Home Guard or the military reserve. Discussions are also ongoing on the proposal to introduce defense classes in Latvia’s schools.
Published: 12.10.2017 14:52