NATO Secretary General and President of Lithuania will inaugurate NATO Force Integration Unit in Vilnius
On September 3 NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg and President of the Republic of Lithuania Dalia Grybauskaitė will inaugurate the NATO Force Integration Unit (NFIU) Lithuania at a ceremony in Vilnius.
NATO Secretary General will be accompanied by Chairman of the NATO Military Committee General Petr Pavel who will unveil the NFIU plaque on its headquarters building together with Chief of Defence of Lithuania Lieutenant General Jonas Vytautas Žukas.
At the ceremony National Flag of Lithuania, flags of NATO, Vilnius City and the NATO Force Integration Unit will be hoisted to the tunes of the anthems of Lithuania and NATO.
Soldiers of the Hungarian Air Force will perform a flypast with JAS–39 Gripen fighter jets in the honour of ceremony participants and residents of Vilnius on the occasion of the ceremony.
The event will also be attended by Prime Minister of Lithuania Algirdas Butkevičius, Minister of National Defence Juozas Olekas, Minister of Foreign Affairs Linas Linkevičius, Commander of Allied Joint Force Command Brunssum General Hans-Lothar Domröse, Commander of the Headquarters Multinational Corps Northeast Lieutenant General Manfred Hofmann, Commander NFIU Lithuania Colonel Jakob Søgård Larsen, Chairs of the Committees for Foreign Affairs, National Security and Defence, European Affairs of the Parliament of the Republic of Lithuania, and other guests.
The establishment of these six NFIUs was agreed at the Wales Summit in 2014. NATO will take further steps at the Warsaw Summit and beyond. All the six NFIUs were officially activated on Monday, September 1. All the six NFIUs are planned to reach full operational capability ahead of the NATO Summit in Warsaw in 2016.
Activation of the NFIUs is part of NATO's fundamental adaptation in the face of security challenges from the east and the south.
NATO Force Integration Units are small command and control headquarters whose key mission is to facilitate the rapid deployment of the NATO Very High Readiness Joint Task Force (VJTF) and additional rapid response elements into the region if needed.
The NFIUs will have a key role in planning, exercising, and assisting potential reinforcements, providing a vital link between national forces and multinational NATO forces.
The NFIU in Lithuania will operate as an intermediate unit facilitating interoperability among national and the region-deployed allied forces. It will also contribute to enhance allied training and exercises, and liaison with NATO’s operational commands.
Staff at the NFIU will cooperate with national forces to identify traffic junctions, key logistical and other necessary infrastructure in the country which will facilitate the quickest possible redeployment of NATO’s response forces into the Baltic region.
The NFIU in Vilnius will comprise roughly 40 military personnel, half of which will be provided by other allied nations. The international staff will comprise representatives from more than 10 NATO member states.
The NFIU in Lithuania is under command of Colonel (Danish Army) Jakob Søgård Larsen. Lieutenant Colonel (Lithuanian Land Force) Mindaugas Petkevičius is acting as second in command.
Media programme for the NATO Force Integration Unit inauguration events
Media representatives willing to cover the event are invited to arrive at the Joint Staff of the Lithuanian Armed Forces (Kapsų str. 44) no later than 10.20 a.m.(for those who plan to interview the Ministers), for others – no later 10.30 a.m.
10.25-10.40 Opportunity to interview Minister of National Defence Juozas Olekas and Minister of Foreign Affairs Linas Linkevičius.
10.55 Arrival of NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg and President of the Republic of Lithuania Dalia Grybauskaitė at the venue of events by the Joint Staff of the Lithuanian Armed Forces (Kapsų str. 44).
11.00-11.15 The NFIU Inauguration Ceremony. Lithuanian soldiers hoisting the flags of Lithuania, NATO, Vilnius City and the NFIU.
The honour of hoisting the Lithuanian National Flag will be given to Private Recruit Ernestas Vilimas, the first person to volunteer to join the reinstated Continuous Mandatory Basic Military Service.
11.15-11.20 Interview opportunity with Lithuanian Minister of National Defence Juozas Olekas and Minister of Foreign Affairs Linas Linkevičius
11.30-11.50 Joint press conference by NATO Secretary General and President of the Republic of Lithuania
Please note that no parking area will be available near the Joint Staff. Arrival ahead of time is recommended to park in nearby streets.
Only accredited media representatives will be admitted to the event. Only accreditation requests submitted no later than noon of September 2 to the MoD Strategic Communications and Public Relations Department will be processed.
To obtain accreditation media representatives should send a filled out accreditation form and scanned copies of press cards and personal ID documents by e-mail at [email protected] no later than September 2, noon. Please indicate ACCREDITATION in the subject gap of your e-mail letter.
Organisers reserve the right to deny access to the media representatives who applied for accreditation later than indicated above.
POC Viktorija Cieminytė, 00370 5 2785 208, 00370 698 11 340.
The confirmation of the accreditation will be replied to the email address received for the accreditation.