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Defense chief warns of possible provocations against NATO troops deployed to Latvia
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    Defense chief warns of possible provocations against NATO troops deployed to Latvia

    RIGA, June 19 (LETA) - There are concerns about possible provocations against the NATO troops of the multi-national battalion deployed to Latvia, Latvian Chief of Defense Leonids Kalnins said on the public Latvian Radio.

    He said the matter had been discussed with the countries participating in the multi-national battalion and the allied troops had been warned about the possibility of provocation and the need to remain calm.

    Latvian Defense Minister Raimonds Bergmanis (Greens/Farmers) said on the public Latvian Television this morning that the concerns about provocations were substantiated as this had already happened in Lithuania where fake news about the allied troops allegedly having raped a local girl had been spread.

    Kalnins said the infrastructure for accommodation of all allied troops was not yet complete but the construction of the barracks was ahead of the schedule and in late August no soldiers would have to live in tents any more.

    As reported, the welcoming ceremony for the Canada-led NATO multi-national battalion enhancing the Alliance's presence in Latvia will take place today in the Adazi military base in central Latvia. In addition to the Latvian officials, the ceremony will be attended by NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg, Canadian Defense Minister Harjit Sajjan and high-ranking NATO and other militaries.

    The Canada-led multi-national battalion of more than 1,000 troops will include also soldiers from Albania, Italy, Poland, Slovenia and Spain.

    As reported, NATO leaders agreed at a summit in July 2016 to boost their defenses in the east to face an increasingly assertive Russia. Deployment of NATO soldiers has begun this year and will proceed on a rotational basis.

    • Published: 19.06.2017 10:32
    • LETA
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