July 31, 2017 – Fort Russ News –
US Vice President Mike Pence said during his visit to Estonia that there is no greater threat for the three Baltic states than the “unpredictable neighbor”, that is, Russia, for them.
Moscow continues “to try to force the international borders, to undermine democracy in sovereign states and to set the free countries of Europe against each other.”
After meeting with the Presidents of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania (NATO member countries), Pence said that US President Donald Trump intends to continue to support these states.
“A strong and united bloc of NATO today is more necessary than ever since the fall of communism a quarter of a century ago,” the vice president said.
“And no threat hangs over the Baltic countries wider than the range of aggression from an unpredictable neighbor from the east,” Pence said.
He also added that the US is ready to defend the security of the Baltic countries. Russia in the meantime is preparing for major military exercises, which will be held in August in conjunction with the army of Belarus.
The day before, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced that Moscow would reduce the number of employees of American diplomatic missions in the country by 755 people. Thus, the number of personnel of American diplomatic missions in Russia will be the same as Russian personnel in America – 455 people on each side.
According to Putin, the Kremlin’s decision is due to the fact that the US side “has taken an unprovoked step towards the deterioration of Russian-American relations,” approving new sanctions against Moscow.
Commenting on these measures by Russia, Pence stressed that they “will not stop the US commitment to ensuring our security and the security of our partners.”
At the same time, Pence noted that the US authorities are hoping for “better days, better relations with Russia.”
The four-day tour of Pence covers three cities – Tallinn, Tbilisi and Podgorica. All three countries, whose capitals are visited by the vice-president, “are concerned about the Russian threat,” analysts say.