Lithuania values the economic partnership with Belarus, but cannot ignore the problems the country is faced with, Foreign Minister Linas Linkevicius said on Wednesday in responce to Belarusian MFA’s decision to summon Lithuania’s ambassador the day before.
Lithuania’s ambassador to Belarus Andrius Pulokas was summoned to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on 6 June following a number of statements by Lithuania President Dalia Grybauskaite in an interview with the LRT TV channel.
Speaking to journalists on Monday, Grybauskaite stated that the Baltic states and Poland shared a common threat from Russia and Belarus.
“The militarization we see in Kaliningrad and the use of the Belarusian territory for various experimental and aggressive games aimed against the West,” the president said in an interview on 5 June.
On Tuesday Lithuania’s ambassador was summoned to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Minsk to provide explanation in connection with the accusations.
“Belarus finds this rhethoric, including the words “aggressive games”, offensive considering peaceful foreign policy and the real steps the country takes to ensure peace in the region”, Belarus MFA said.
Such statements are made not to strengthen security in the region, but to increase the country’s recognition among NATO partners and voters’s ratings, the Belarusian ministry added.
Lithuania values the economic partnership with Belarus, however, cannot ignore the problems the country is faced with, says Foreign Minister Linas Linkevicius.
On Wednesday, in response to the Belarusian Foreign Ministry’s actions, the Foreign Minister of Lithuania Linas Linkevicius called Belarus a valuable neighbor but said thta Lithuania won’t ignore the problems it is facing.
“We always recall that it is our neighbor, that we have trade and we communicate with the neighbor, and partnership is very important in this respect. However, there are aspects that require comments. We cannot disregard this,” Linkevicius is quoted by BNS on Wednesday morning.
“As far as I know, the president stated her stance on the recent military exercise in Russia, which include Belarus and use its territory for stationing of large capabilities,” said the minister.
He emphasized Minsk’s “unwillingness to talk about” the nuclear power plant under construction in Astravyets close to the Lithuanian border.