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GALLERY: US vice president's plane lands in Tallinn

31 July 2017

Pence's trip to Estonia, Georgia and Montenegro is viewed as a follow-up to President Trump's visit to Europe earlier this month.

Trump is expected to sign financial sanctions against Russia passed by Congress, and global observers are watching to see how Russian President Vladimir Putin will respond.

For Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania - tiny Baltic countries - the fact of the rejoining of Crimea to Russian Federation after it broke free from Ukraine is very nervous, so Mike Pence's visit to the Baltic region is very timely.

The vice president is expected to deliver a message of support for US trade and investment with the countries while underscoring the USA commitment to the security of the three nations, according to senior administration officials who briefed reporters about the trip on the condition that they not be identified by name.

Montenegro became a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation member earlier this year and Georgia has tried to join in the past.

The officials added that Pence also will stress the virtues of freedom of speech, democracy, and religious tolerance.

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Pence also said the Trump administration had "made it clear" that it stood behind NATO's Article 5 commitment that an attack on one member was an attack on all - a pledge that Trump has been criticised for failing to spell out emphatically.

On Monday morning, the presidents of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, Kersti Kaljulaid, Raimonds Vejonis and Dalia Grybauskaite, respectively, are set to meet with Pence and participate in a roundtable discussion on cyber issues and innovation.

Vice President Mike Pence on Sunday said he and President Donald Trump are "hopeful" Russian Federation will alter its aggressive behavior toward the nations of eastern Europe, The Hill reported.

Margvelashvili said the Georgian army will start two weeks of exercises with the United States and other partner countries on July 30, the day before Pence's visit to Tbilisi.

On the last stop, Pence will welcome NATO's newest member with his stop in Montenegro, which only joined the alliance in June. Also expected to attend are the leaders of Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Kosovo, Macedonia, Serbia and Slovenia.

GALLERY: US vice president's plane lands in Tallinn