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Lithuania will contribute to the UK-led Joint Expeditionary Force launched to tackle common threats


Lithuania will be one of the seven countries in establishing the UK-led high-readiness Joint Expeditionary Force (JEF). The JEF, designed to meet new challenges in uncertain world, could mean the mobilisation up to 10, 000 troops to tackle crisis.


The Memorandum of Understanding on the establishment of the JEF was signed by Minister of National Defence Juozas Olekas and his counterparts from the other participating counties, Denmark, Estonia, Latvia, the Netherlands, Norway and the UK, on November 30 in London. It will allow each country to train and integrate, sharing knowledge and skills.


The Joint Expeditionary Force will be a pool high-readiness forces that can respond quickly to a range of issues, using combat power, conventional deterrence or humanitarian assistance.


“Unpredictability and vulnerability of today’s security environment require for united efforts and prompt actions and the framework of seven like-minded allies is developed to be that reliable and sharp tool to respond to any challenges this group of nations might face”, the Lithuanian Minister of National Defence, Juozas Olekas said.


“In a world of ever-greater uncertainty and growing threats it is right that the UK plays a leading role in developing this high-readiness force. Building on our pledges made at the NATO Summit, this demonstrates our commitment to crisis management and cooperative security,” Secretary of Defence of the United Kingdom Michael Fallon said.


The JEF is distinct from existing treaty organisations, but can complement other multinational high-readiness intervention forces and can support the activities of the UN, NATO and the EU.


While the core of the JEF will be provided by the United Kingdom, other participating countries will fill in with national capabilities.


The JEF is planned to reach Full Operational Capability by 2018 when national contributions will be fully integrated and the attached capabilities will be balanced out with land, maritime, air and cyber elements that will be adjustable to a specific operation or mission.


Lithuania plans contributing a company-sized unit; moreover, a Lithuanian officer will be assigned to the JEF operational headquarters in the United Kingdom as of 2016.


Participation in the JEF will provide Lithuanian troops with additional opportunities for national forces to train in a multi-national environment, sharing knowledge, skills, and, where appropriate and seek better interoperability and operational readiness.


The signing of the Memorandum of Understanding on November 30 builds on the pledges made at the NATO Summit in Wales in 2014 where seven NATO allies signed a Letter of Intent on the establishment of the Joint Expeditionary Force.


Credits: UK Ministry of Defence

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