Lithuania Likely to Buy IRIS-T Air Defense System From Germany

Lithuania plans to add Germany’s IRIS-T medium-range missiles to its air defense posture, according to Defense Minister Laurynas Kasčiūnas.

The announcement was made during a meeting with German Defense Minister Boris Pistorius in Palanga, western Lithuania.

“A system, which has proven itself and is effective in Ukraine, could become part of our armed forces in a few years,” he said.

Kasčiūnas added that Germany’s focus on growing its defense industry is a major factor in the plan.

Pistorius clarified that Berlin does not have IRIS-T units ready for immediate purchase following its transfers to Kyiv.

“We understand that it is not so easy now and there are production processes, capacities, but we are very clear in saying that this is a product that is of great interest to us,” Kasčiūnas added.

Boosting Lithuania’s Defense

Lithuania is taking multiple approaches to address security threats in the region, including stronger missile defense.

Earlier this month, the country received a $16.6-million Javelin medium-range anti-tank missile shipment from the US to replenish its depleted reserves.

Vilnius also ordered 36 AMRAAM missiles from Raytheon last year for around $100 million.

Aside from missile systems, the country is also investing in new drone technologies, particularly first-person-view drones.

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