Obama to make Baltic call

United States President Barack Obama will make his first visit to the Baltic states on September 3, stopping off in Tallinn, Estonia for talks with leaders from all three Baltic republics.

Estonia's ERR News broke the news Thursday, with official confirmation of Obama's agenda expected Friday.

Latvian President Andris Berzins told LTV's Rita Panorama news show Friday that he would also be there, along with the Presidents of Poland and Lithuania when Obama touched down in Tallinn to discuss a range of topics.

"The situation in the world has changed dramatically, so there will be questions about new NATO tactics... and instability in Iraq, the Gaza strip so we can coordinate our strategies," Berzins said.

Nevertheless the over-riding topic will certainly be Baltic defense in the context of Russia's actions in Ukraine and calls from the region for an increased presence of NATO troops and military hardware.

The date is significant, coming just one day before the heads of NATO member states gather in Wales for a major summit meeting and suggests the US and Baltics will coordinate their positions prior to the summit. 

Latvian Ambassador to the US Andris Razāns said Obama's visit will signal the seriousness of the US' level of support for the region, particularly in the context of events in Ukraine.

"[It sends] a clear signal that Baltic security and prosperity have the highest level of priority with the United States. Otherwise, such a visit would not take place," Razāns told LTV.

Obama will be the first sitting US president to visit the Baltics since George W Bush in 2006.

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