ANNVILLE, Pa., June 7, 2017 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Governor Tom Wolf welcomed Lithuanian Defense Minister Raimundas Karoblis Monday at the Pennsylvania Capitol in Harrisburg to discuss Pennsylvania's partnership with Lithuania through the National Guard's State Partnership Program and items related to expanded cooperation between Lithuania's military and ministries.
"Next year the Pennsylvania National Guard and Lithuania will be celebrating 25 years of an extremely successful partnership through the National Guard's State Partnership," said Governor Wolf. "While our military partnership continues to set the bar nationally, it is only logical we look for additional ways to use this relationship to further benefit both Pennsylvania and Lithuania in other arenas."
Karoblis and Wolf discussed additional opportunities for cooperation in economic development, education and energy.
The meeting was preceded by a visit to the Pennsylvania National Guard's headquarters at Fort Indiantown Gap to engage with senior leadership on ongoing efforts related to the Pennsylvania National Guard's nearly 25 year partnership with Lithuania.
"Thank you for fostering this exceptional partnership and for the continued cooperation of the Pennsylvania National Guard in contributing to the education and combat readiness of our personnel," said Karoblis. "With your support, we have become more trained and better prepared for challenges."
Karoblis also emphasized how the current security situation in the Baltics remains tense and requires a comprehensive deterrence posture in the region.
"U.S. troops on the ground is the best deterrence. The Pennsylvania National Guard is an important part of that U.S. presence," Karoblis noted. "Training with the Pennsylvania National Guard on a regular basis helps to build the mutual understanding and interoperability to conduct missions together."
The Pennsylvania National Guard established a relationship with Lithuania in 1993. In the 24 years that have followed, Pennsylvania and Lithuania have conducted more than 500 military and training exchanges on top of numerous joint deployments to Afghanistan as part of joint police operational mentor liaison teams and provincial reconstruction teams.
More information on the Pennsylvania-Lithuania partnership is available at: http://www.png.pa.gov/offices_and_programs/Pages/state_partnership_program.aspx
Photos from the visit can be viewed at:
MEDIA CONTACT: Pennsylvania National Guard Public Affairs Office, 717-861-8352
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SOURCE Pennsylvania Department of Military and Veterans Affairs