Scholz visits German brigade in Lithuania that is to deter Russia

Monday, 6 May 2024 —

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz arrived in Lithuania on Monday to visit German soldiers who will be members of a future German brigade.

As reported by LRT, the initial members of the German brigade that will be based in Lithuania arrived in early April. More than 20 soldiers have settled in Vilnius and are responsible for planning the brigade's redeployment to Lithuania and coordinating military infrastructure requirements.

On Monday, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz visited these and other German soldiers stationed in the Baltic country. During his visit, Scholz said that Berlin's commitment to Lithuania is part of a shift in German security policy.

"Germany recognises its responsibility for security in NATO, therefore we are deploying an entire brigade here in Lithuania, and this is a convincing contribution on Germany’s part to deterring any threat on NATO territory," Scholz said.


Lithuanian President Gitanas Nausėda said that the tense geopolitical situation in the region requires more rapid deployment of the German brigade in Lithuania.

"I am pleased with the progress of the brigade's deployment, but our strategic security environment requires an even faster pace. We don't have the luxury of wasting a single minute," Nausėda said in a speech to journalists on Monday.

Scholz is visiting Lithuania during the Grand Quadriga 2024, a large-scale exercise involving the German Bundeswehr.

The brigade deployed to Lithuania will consist of about 5,000 German soldiers.

The deployment of a German brigade was discussed after Russia's full-scale invasion of Ukraine in February 2022, and Germany announced a firm commitment to this end last June.

A German-led NATO international battalion deployed to Lithuania in 2017 will also be integrated into the brigade. This is planned for 2026.

According to media estimates, the deployment of the German brigade in Lithuania could cost around €11 billion.

The Lithuanian brigade has drawn increased attention because it is the first Bundeswehr unit to be permanently deployed abroad. 

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