Military of LithuaniaThe Lithuanian Armed Forces consist of 16000 personnel in uniform.
Lithuania's defense system is based on the concept of "total and unconditional defense" mandated by Lithuania's national security strategy. The goal of Lithuania's defense policy is to prepare their society for general defense and to integrate Lithuania into Western security and defense structures. The defense ministry is responsible for combat forces, search/rescue, and intelligence operations. A mandatory 1-year conscription and alternative service is available for conscientious objectors.
The 5,400 border guards fall under the Interior Ministry's supervision and are responsible for border protection, passport and customs duties, and share responsibility with the navy for smuggling/drug trafficking interdiction. A special security department handles VIP protection and communications security.
Lithuania cooperates with Estonia and Latvia in the joint infantry battalion BALTBAT and naval squadron BALTRON as well as with Poland in the LITPOLBAT, all of which are available for peacekeeping operations.
Military branches: Ground Forces, Navy, Air and Air Defense Force, Security Forces (internal and border troops), National Guard (Skat)
Military manpower - military age: 18 years of age
Military manpower - availability:
males age 15-49: 925,551 (2000 est.)
Military manpower - fit for military service:
males age 15-49: 727,609 (2000 est.)
Military manpower - reaching military age annually:
males: 27,259 (2000 est.)
Military expenditures - dollar figure: $181 million (FY99)
Military expenditures - percent of GDP: 1.5% (FY99)
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2 Lithuanian Army
3 Lithuaninan Navy
4 Lithuanian Air Force
The Army has 14786 personnel. The core of the Lithuanian force structure is the 'Iron Wolf' Rapid Reaction Brigade (fully operational in 2005) consisting of two mechanised battalions, one motorised battalion, one artillery battalion, logistics and support battalions. An additional three battalions are located in the western military district. The National Volunteer Defense Forces (home guard) consist of one battalion-sized unit in each of Lithuania's 10 districts.
The 644-man navy uses patrol boats and former Russian corvettes for coastal surveillance; It consists of a Combat Ship Squadron and a Patrol Boat Squadron.
Lithuanian Air Force
The Air Force has 940 personnel and operates 27 planes, including L-39ZA and L-39 armed trainers, and 10 helicopters (Mi-8 and Mi-2) used mostly for reconnaissance and border patrol.