Lithuania will sign a letter of intent to acquire French Caesar self-propelled guns, on the sidelines of a meeting between the two countries' defense ministers on Monday at the Eurosatory defense fair, the two countries announced.
The new French Minister for the Armed Forces Sébastien Lecornu “meets today his Lithuanian counterpart Arvydas Anusauskas on the occasion of the opening of the Eurosatory exhibition”, north of Paris, according to the ministry.
“We will discuss the capacity building of the armed forces. I will also sign the first letter of intent for the purchase of French 155mm Caesar howitzer guns for Lithuania,” said his Lithuanian counterpart on Twitter.
The number of self-propelled guns that Vilnius intends to acquire is not specified.
This decision comes as the Baltic country, a member of the EU and NATO, decided to increase by 300 million euros, bringing it to 1.5 billion, its defense budget for 2022 in the light of Russia's invasion of Ukraine and the fears it raises for its own security.
According to the Ministry of the Armed Forces, "the ties that unite Lithuania and France in terms of defense are very solid and will be further developed in the weeks to come, in the degraded geopolitical context that we are experiencing in Europe".
The conflict in Ukraine is reminiscent of the role of artillery in high-intensity conflicts, with the West, primarily the United States, supplying dozens of guns to Ukrainian forces to contain Russian thrusts.
In this context, France delivered 6 Caesar guns to Kyiv at the end of April, as well as thousands of shells.
Produced by Nexter, the Caesar is a truck-mounted 155mm cannon capable of firing six rounds per minute at a range of 40 kilometers.
France has 76 copies. The system has also been sold nearly 300 copies to seven countries (Saudi Arabia, Denmark, Indonesia, Thailand, Czech Republic, Morocco and Belgium).