The defense of Luxembourg, based on NATO membership, comprises (2007)
900 men and is organized as a light infantry battalion. A
significant part of NATO's airborne surveillance system, 17 AWACS, is registered in Luxembourg. Defense costs decreased
in 1985-2007 from 0.9% to 0.7% of GDP. To see related acronyms about this country, please check ABBREVIATIONFINDER where you can see that LUX stands for Luxembourg.
In February 2004, three Russian diplomats were charged with
espionage and expelled by Lithuania. The Ministry of Foreign
Affairs stated that they carried out illegal activities in
the shadow of their diplomatic presence by, among other
things. having worked on obtaining secret information from
Parliament on the case against Paksas.
In April 2004, Parliament passed a political verdict on
Paksas, who was found guilty of violating the Constitution,
for not censoring classified material and for giving
citizenship to a Russian against financial support from him.
In a speech to Parliament, Paksas insisted that his mistake
should not lead to court proceedings and that he was
innocent. He further stated: “The case is a retaliatory
action by the political system. A vendetta that is due to my
work in combating corruption in the country ». Based on the
constitution, Paksas was then replaced by his political
rival, Arturas Paulauskas.
On May 1, 2004, along with nine other Eastern and Central
European countries, the country was admitted to the EU.
At the June presidential election, Valdas Adamkus was
elected president with 52.2% of the vote, against Kazimiera
Prunskiene who got 47.8%.
In November, the country became the first to ratify the
new EU constitution. In May 2005, President Adamkus rejected
an invitation from Moscow to attend the celebrations around
the 60th anniversary of the end of World War II. In June
2005, the leader of the Labor Party, Viktor Uspaskich,
resigned from the post of finance minister after it was
revealed that his ministry was involved in corruption.
Despite the scandal, his party remained in the government
coalition. The government's former finance minister,
Algirdas Butkevicius, had to step down from the post in
April following disagreements around the Finance Act.
In September, a Russian fighter plane crashed into
Lithuanian territory. It carried at least 4 missiles. The
incident led to a deterioration in relations between Vilnius
and Moscow. Only when investigation made it clear that the
cause of the crash was technical and human error did the
relationship between the two countries normalize again. The
pilot, who had been arrested in Lithuania, was released and
could return to Russia.