The Lithuanian authorities have said that the country wants to reestablish the Coast Guard’s border patrol from next year in an attempt to further protect the sea borders.
The Minister of Interior of Lithuania, Agnė Bilotaitė, visited Klaipėda and Neringa last week, and during her visit, she discussed the possibility of re-establishing these border patrols.
Minister Bilotaitė said that it is important to pay close attention to the protection of the border with Russia and the sea border and, at the same time, stressed that the country needs to be ready for any hybrid attacks or an increase in irregular migration.
In the current security situation, it is necessary to pay special attention to the protection of both the border with the Russian Federation and the sea border – we must be ready to counter threats related to possible provocations, hybrid attacks, and illegal migration. Therefore, we propose to restore the Coast Guard border squad from next year.
As the Ministry of Interior of Lithuania explains, the team will operate in the border section near the state border with Russia and Latvia and in many other parts of the country.
By having increased coast border patrols, the Ministry said that they want to promptly manage all risks, increase the speed of response to violations, and ensure more efficient management of search and operations.
Moreover, by re-establishing the coast border patrol, the Ministry said that the country will be able to more effectively fight people smuggling and irregular migration.
Distribution of forces according to the type of border will help to ensure better preparedness since land and sea border protection methods are different. This will make it possible to more evenly distribute the selected sections at the internal EU border to strengthen the control of secondary migration.
In addition to the above-mentioned, it has been noted that the border patrols will also cooperate with the other Baltic countries to increase border security and protection as much as possible when needed.
Data show that at the border with Russia, the Lithuanian authorities reported 21 border violations in 2022. As for 2023, it has been revealed that the authorities have reported 12 state border violations.
Lithuania already applies strict rules at its border with Russia, the country has monitoring systems and a 46-kilometre-long physical barrier to prevent all kinds of threats and attacks.