The US to increase its military presence in Baltics during Russia’s Zapad-2017 military exercise

The United States will increase the number of servicemen and military equipment in Lithuania during the time of the joint Russian and Belarusian military exercises, Zapad 2017, as stated by the President of Lithuania, Dalia Grybauskaitė, writes DW.

She said that the number of US Armed Forces personnel, equipment, and vessels will be increased in Lithuania. Also, air patrol missions will double as seven US aircraft will arrive in Lithuania.

The strategic exercises of the armed forces of the Republic of Belarus and the Russian Federation, Zapad 2017, will be held in Belarus on September 14-20.

These exercises raise concerns among NATO member countries. They believe that Zapad 2017 could turn out to be a "Trojan horse", with the help of which Russia will leave transferred military equipment in Belarus.

The Secretary of the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine, Oleksandr Turchynov, said that during the large-scale military exercise, Zapad 2017, offensive operations towards Europe might be conducted.

  Zapad 2017, Lithuania, US military