Lithuanian foreign minister discusses EU-Belarusian relations in Minsk
the Lithuania Tribune
Friday, July 25, 2014
On 24-25 July, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania Linas Linkevičius visited Minsk, where he met with Prime Minister of Belarus Mikhail Myasnikovich and the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Belarus Vladimir Makei.
The Crimean annexation by Russia has played out big for Lithuania: holidaymakers from Belarus, who usually choose Crimea for their vacation, this summer have been swarming Lithuanian resorts instead. The numbers of Belarusian tourists in Lithuania could be even higher if it were not for the lengthy and often intimidating visa procedures.
Belarus’s Independence Day is celebrated on 3 July. On that day, 70 years ago, Minsk was liberated from the Nazi occupiers. This 3 July, President Vladimir Putin of Russia participated in Minsk’s celebration. Two days prior to that event, during a grand ceremonial meeting devoted to the national holiday, President Alexander Lukashenko delivered part of his speech in Belarusian.
Lithuania must maintain a dialogue with the Belarusian government, Lithuanian Minister of Foreign Affairs Linas Linkevicius said on Wednesday, noting that Western leader are holding meetings with Russian President Vladimir Putin, despite ongoing events in Ukraine.