French President Emmanuel Macron will fly to Lithuania and Lativa later this month, ostensibly to visit French troops serving in the frontline NATO countries.

The French leader will hold talks from September 28-30 with Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda, Latvian President Egils Levits and Prime Minister Krisjanis Karins. The unfolding crisis in Belarus is expected to top the agenda.

The visit follows a period of heightened French engagement in the eastern Mediterranean, where Greece is facing Turkish expansionism at sea as it drills for hydrocarbons. France has sent ships to bolster the Greek navy and will sell 18 Rafale fighters and four new frigates to Athens.

PHOTO: French President Emmanuel Macron gestures as he delivers an address to French tech start-ups at the closing ceremony of the National Council of French Tech Capitals and Communities (CNCC) at the Elysee palace in Paris, France, September 14, 2020. REUTERS/Charles Platiau/Pool