Netherlands to deploy Patriot air defense system in Lithuania

Dutch Patriot defense system to be deployed as part of Baltic Connection 24 exercise

Leila Nezirevic  | 02.07.2024 - Update : 02.07.2024
Netherlands to deploy Patriot air defense system in Lithuania FILE PHOTO


The Lithuanian Armed Forces announced Tuesday that the Netherlands will deploy the Patriot long-range air defense system in the Baltic country later this week, local media reported.

The Patriot defense system will be deployed for the Baltic Connection 24 (BALTCON24) exercise, which Lithuania is hosting for the first time from July 7 - 19, according to the national broadcaster, LRT.

The exercise will include the Lithuanian Air Force’s Air Defense Battalion with NASAMS medium-range air defense systems, the Royal Netherlands Air Force’s Patriot system, Spanish and Portuguese fighter jets carrying out NATO’s Baltic air policing mission and the Lithuanian Armed Forces’ Air Operations Centre and Air Force aircraft, it said.

The Baltic country is asking NATO countries to rotate ground-based air defense systems as part of a regional rotational air defense model that was agreed to last year.

“The deployment of the Patriot air defense system for the bilateral exercise in Lithuania marks the first step in implementing the decision made at last year’s NATO summit in Vilnius to establish a rotational air defense model to strengthen NATO’s integrated air and missile defense,” the ministry was quoted by LRT.

The exercise will train the redeployment and integration of capabilities, unified command and control, and the conduct of air defense operations, said the broadcaster.

Patriot systems were deployed in Lithuania last July when the country hosted a NATO summit.

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