Poland, Lithuania stand together against 'hybrid attacks’ by Belarus: defence minister

Poland’s Defence Minister Mariusz Błaszczak on Friday said Warsaw and Vilnius were working together to counter „hybrid attacks” by neighbouring Belarus, as he hosted his Lithuanian counterpart Arvydas Anušauskas during wide-ranging two-way talks in the Polish capital.

Polands Defence Minister Mariusz Błaszczak (right) and his Lithuanian counterpart Arvydas Anuauskas (left) meet for talks in Warsaw on Friday.

Poland’s Defence Minister Mariusz Błaszczak (right) and his Lithuanian counterpart Arvydas Anušauskas (left) meet for talks in Warsaw on Friday.Photo: PAP/Marcin Obara

The two defence ministers met as part of bilateral intergovernmental consultations, which were led in Warsaw on Friday by Poland’s Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki and Lithuania’s Ingrida Šimonytė, public broadcaster Polish Radio’s IAR news agency reported.

Following his meeting with Anušauskas, Błaszczak told the media the two countries were „experiencing hybrid attacks at the hands of Belarus” and were „consequently joining forces to counter these assaults and build resilience.”

“We exchanged observations on how we have been making our borders with Belarus tighter,” Błaszczak said.

The two defence ministers also discussed military cooperation, according to Błaszczak, including joint drills between the Polish and Lithuanian brigades from NATO’s Multinational Division North East, which operates out of the northern Polish city of Elbląg.

There are plans to set up a trilateral brigade with Ukraine to pool experience and help bring Kyiv’s army up to speed with NATO standards, Błaszczak said, adding that another round of Polish-Lithuanian defence consultations would take place in Vilnius early next year.

Friday’s intergovernmental talks focused mainly on European affairs and border security, Poland’s state news agency PAP reported.

Apart from the defence ministers, the talks involved Cabinet ministers in charge of climate and environmental policies, family and social policies, interior affairs, infrastructure, health, finance, education and science, according to the Polish news agency.

(pm/gs)

Source: IAR, PAP

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