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The Foreign Minister in Lithuania: The prospect of Europe must be open to Ukraine, Georgia and Moldova


At their meeting today in Vilnius, Foreign Minister Keit Pentus-Rosimannus and Lithuanian Foreign Minister Linas Linkevičius discussed Estonian-Lithuanian bilateral relations, regional cooperation, preparations for the upcoming Eastern Partnership Summit and the security situation in the region and in Europe in general. “Estonia has very close and good-neighbourly relations with Lithuania, as well as common interests in the areas of economy, energy and defence cooperation,” the Foreign Minister noted.

On the subject of cooperation between the two countries, the foreign ministers highlighted good trade relations and joint projects to ensure the development of energy security and transport. At the meeting, Foreign Minister Pentus-Rosimannus stressed the positive impact of the floating terminal in Klaipeda on the competitiveness of the Estonian gas market. “In February, three Estonian companies imported approximately 20 percent of the total gas imports to Estonia through Klaipeda,” the Foreign Minister noted and expressed hope that cooperation between the two countries to connect the so-called Baltic energy island will continue.

The Estonian Foreign Minister also mentioned the importance of the Rail Baltic project. The foreign ministers also discussed opportunities to intensify defence and cyber cooperation.

In regard to Russia's aggression, the Estonian and Lithuanian Foreign Ministers agreed that the European Union must continue its uniform policy and insist on Russia’s full compliance with the Minsk agreements. “The situation is very fragile and could escalate again at any moment – we must be prepared to react quickly and, if necessary, to extend sanctions,” the Foreign Minister said.

Keeping in mind the Eastern Partnership Summit in Riga in May, the foreign ministers discussed relations with the Eastern partners, and in particular, the need to demonstrate solidarity and support for Eastern Partnership countries in carrying out their reforms. Linkevičius agreed with the Estonian Foreign Minister, that in the case of real reforms being carried out, the prospect of Europe must be open to Eastern Partnership countries. “Keeping our own recent past in mind, we have a moral obligation to support and speak up for those countries, which have now made the same choice in favour of the European organization of society,” Foreign Minister Pentus-Rosimannus stressed.

Foreign Minister Pentus-Rosimannus also thanked her Lithuanian colleague for his support in the Eston Kohver incident. “We are very grateful to our partners who continue to keep this unfortunate incident attentively in their sights and support us by demanding his release from Russia,” the Foreign Minister added.

In Vilnius, Foreign Minister Pentus-Rosimannus also met with Lithuanian Minister of Justice Juozas Bernatonis to discuss issues related to i-voting in more detail.

From Vilnius, the Foreign Minister will travel on to Warsaw, where she will meet with Polish Foreign Minister Grzegorz Schetyna.




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