Mayor of the Latvian city of Ventspils, Aivars Lembergs, shared his ideas about what the Latvians expect from the planned growth of NATO military presence in the Baltic region. According to him, local prostitutes are waiting for NATO soldiers impatiently.
The official suggested that Latvia should actively intervene in the conflict between Russia and the West. He also criticized the Defense Ministry of Latvia for harsh statements on the subjects.
"It is funny that our minister is running ahead of everyone. It is clear to all that Latvia is not a party in the geopolitical war. It is not beneficial for our country to interfere in the conflict between the West and Russia," he said. According to the mayor of Ventspils, the struggle for presidency in the country has begun, and "the U.S. seems to want a more ardent fighter for the interests of America."
As for strengthening NATO's presence in the Baltic countries and the creation of a military port in Latvia, Lembergs said: "For Ventspils, this is going to be advantageous. A thousand NATO troops will arrive, and prostitutes will inundate the city. Cafes, restaurants and prostitutes will profit from this," the official said.
Residents of the Baltic countries actively discuss the issues of sexual needs of NATO troops and associated economic benefits. Thus, some people believe that one should increase the number of foreign soldiers cautiously, otherwise "one would have to bring prostitutes in batches." Others say that one may count for female residents of Ukraine, who may come to Latvia "to associate themselves with the EU."
In Latvia, prostitutes as economic subjects have been seriously taken into account since 2009, when Bloomberg columnist Matthew Lynn suggested fancy women should be used as an indicator of global economy. He paid attention to the research of Australian investment manager John Hempton, who studied fluctuations of tariffs of Latvian prostitutes. Overpriced intimate services, as the study said, was associated with deficit in Latvia. Subsequent deflation followed the upward trend in the economy.
The analyst suggested the International Monetary Fund should maintain full alertness after the 2008 recession until the tariffs of Latvian prostitutes returned to pre-crisis levels.
In 2014, Latvia intended to struggle against prostitutes. It was even suggested their clients should be taken into criminal account. However, no changes in the law have been made.
Allied Commander of NATO in Europe, General Philip Breedlove, said that he did not exclude the deployment of additional troops, including U.S. ones, in Eastern Europe. Estonia plans to accept Danish fighters and build a second NATO military base. Lithuania is waiting for Polish and British pilots.
Meanwhile, the photos of Russian troops stationed near the border with Ukraine, which NATO has recently unveiled, continue to remain a subject of the ongoing conflict between Russia and the West. NATO officials claimed that the photos were made in the spring of 2014. Russian officials responded that the satellite images of Russian units of the Southern Military District were made last summer, when military drills were being conducted in the area.
More than 20 controversial photos sent out by Supreme Headquarters of Allied Powers in Europe (SHAPE) depicted Russian helicopters near the city of Belgorod, fighter aircraft on the field near Primorsko -Akhtarsk, an artillery battalion near Novocherkassk and armored vehicles in Kuzminka. NATO estimated the strength of Russian troops near the Ukrainian border at about 35-40 thousand people, saying that there were infantry fighting vehicles, tanks, combat aircraft and artillery.
Moscow preferred not to start a dispute about the commercial photographs, which the NATO administration obtained from Digital Globe image company. Moscow accused the West of exaggerating the presence of Russian troops on the border with Ukraine. Russia also warned the West that the deployment of NATO troops near Russian borders would be a direct violation of international agreements. NATO is prepared to violate the agreements, "to satisfy absolutely groundless fears, phobias, and ambitions of their minority," Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said.