Ambassador to Latvia Christopher Robinson
Remarks at Latvian Ministry of Defense
December 8, 2023
Thank you Minister Sprūds and thank you to your team at the Latvian Ministry of Defense and to Latvia’s armed forces for helping us get to this important day.
With today’s announcement on the Naval Strike Missile system, we mark an important milestone in the long-standing security cooperation between the United States and Latvia.
Russia’s brutal war of aggression in Ukraine has proven that democratic countries must stand together to defend our sovereignty, our values, and our freedom. Latvia has been a leader in this effort, providing tremendous military, humanitarian, political, and economic support to Ukraine. Latvia is also a leader in NATO, strengthening its own defenses with increased spending and investment as the minister just announced today. The United States is proud to support Latvia in building its defensive capabilities and will provide 70 million dollars towards the purchase of the Naval Strike Missile system.
The U.S. and Latvia security partnership enhances defense capacity, both in terms of equipment and personnel. This agreement we conclude today provides not only equipment but also training, technical assistance, and support. This type of partnership will help Latvia further strengthen its defense capabilities to defend its coastline, ports, and territorial waters. Moreover, the Naval Strike Missile system will also provide critical interoperability with other NATO allies using the same system. Again, with this system, Latvia will be helping to make NATO stronger and more secure.
Robust deterrence and defense along NATO’s eastern border remains at the core of U.S. security assistance to Latvia. The support to the procurement of Naval Strike Missile system is the latest in a broader set of U.S. security assistance to help Latvia’s ongoing efforts to strengthen the National Armed Forces’ capabilities. In 2023 alone, the United States government has approved 142 million dollars in security assistance to Latvia. We look forward to continued opportunities to cooperate and deepen our partnership with the Ministry of Defense and Latvia’s Armed Forces.
Thank you. Paldies.