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Baltic PMs to Discuss COVID Restrictions

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Baltic PMs to Discuss COVID Restrictions

Baltic PMs to COVID Restrictions
Photo: Jürgen Randma

The Prime Ministers of the Baltic states of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania will meet today to discuss harmonizing COVID-19 restrictions.

The meeting comes as Lithuania recently began planning to suspend vaccination requirements, possibly indicating that Latvia and Estonia will soon follow suit.

However, the meeting is likely to be a precursor towards further regional cooperation—particularly in defense, one of the key agendas of the Latvian presidency of the Baltic Council of Ministers. All three nations are NATO and EU member states, meaning they may coordinate more closely in their relations with Russia which could become threatening if it achieves its objectives in Ukraine, especially due to Lithuania’s frosty relations with Russian ally Belarus.

Russia is militarily and economically far more powerful than the three states combined. Therefore, the Baltics will still be dependent on external support for their security, likely from NATO states such as the United States, which recently deployed additional soldiers to eastern Europe. As a result, expect the Baltic states to collectively increase ties and cooperation with other NATO and EU member states to counter their military and economic disadvantage, possibly coming in the form of a larger deployment of NATO soldiers in the region.

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