VILNIUS, Feb 24 (Reuters) - Some forty U.S. service members arrived in Latvia from Italy early on Thursday, the first group of what is expected to be a deployment of more than 300 troops, the Latvian Defense Ministry said.
The troops, which will be based at Adazi military base just outside the Latvian capital Riga, arrived around midnight local time, before hostilities began in Ukraine, it added.
U.S. President Joe Biden’s Tuesday announcement of a redistribution of troops in Europe includes sending 800 infantry soldiers to the Baltic region and up to eight F-35 fighter jets to several operating locations along NATO’s eastern flank, a U.S. official said, speaking on condition of anonymity. (Reporting by Andrius Sytas in Vilnius and Janis Laizans in Riga, writing by Gwladys Fouche in Oslo)
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