(VILNIUS) – Lithuanian Foreign Minister says that Vilnius cannot ignore some of the problems existing in Belarus.
Lithuania values the economic partnership with Belarus, but it “cannot ignore the problems existing in this country,” Lithuanian Foreign Minister Linas Linkevičius stated. Delfi.lt reports about it with reference to BNS. In that way he reacted to calling Lithuanian Ambassador Andrius Pulokas to the Belarusian Foreign Ministry for giving explanations regarding the statements made by the President of Lithuania.
– We always remember that this is our neighbor, that we are trading with this neighbor and are cooperating, and partnership is very important in this sense. However, there are aspects that deserve comment. We cannot ignore this. As far as I know, the president has expressed her opinion on the recent Russian-organized exercises, to which Belarus is highly integrated, its territory is used to deploy large capacities, – Linkevičius said on Wednesday morning, adding that Minsk does not want to discuss the Belarusian NPP under construction.
On Monday, June 5, Lithuania’s President Dalia Grybauskaite called the vicinity to Russia and Belarus a “challenge and a threat”.
– Estonia, Latvia and Poland are very important for us, because this is the eastern border of NATO, so the challenges and threats are the same. This is the location of Russia and Belarus at our eastern borders. Of course, this is the militarization that we see in Kaliningrad, the use of the territory of Belarus for various experiments and aggressive games directed against the West. The forthcoming military exercises West-2017 are among them, – Grybauskaite said.
In the evening, Lithuanian Foreign Minister Andrius Pulokas was summoned to the Belarusian Foreign Ministry and demanded explanations in connection with Grybauskaite’s statements.
– The lexicon used by the President of Lithuania, including the words “aggressive games,” is an insult to our country, which implements a peace-loving policy, makes a real and universally recognized contribution to strengthening the security of our region, – the Belarusian Foreign Ministry noted.