Baltic leaders are departing for the annual Munich Security Conference that gathers state leaders and ministers to discuss upcoming security challenges that are existential for the Baltic states.
Estonia’s International Centre for Defence and Security (ICDS) will host a discussion on deterrence, security and stability in the Baltic states that will be attended by Lithuanian President Gitanas Nausėda and his Latvian counterpart, Egils Levits.
“All three Baltic states are very small countries and in a bad neighbourhood,” Sven Sakkov from ICDS told LRT English over the phone from Munich. “For us, security is the most [important] policy, which determines how to survive.”
Therefore, having NATO and US presence in Europe is “existentially important [and] not just something nice to have, it’s a must,” he added.
Westernlessness, a gloomy topic of this year’s Munich conference, challenges the apparent loss of “common understanding of what it even means to be part of the West,” the chairman of the conference, Wolfgang Ischinger, is quoted by EurActiv.
“It appears uncertain whether the West can come up with a joint strategy for a new era of great power competition,” he said.
The forum will therefore be “a prime opportunity to take the temperature of not just the state of international peace and security in general but of the West in particular.” The Estonian president will arrive in Munich too late to join the discussion, according to Sakkov.