Attempts to portray Lithuanians as hostile to the Russian nation are totally missing the point, Lithuania's foreign minister insists.

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Military parade in the Red Square
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While political tensions have led to a chill in relations between the governments in Vilnius and Moscow, professional and cultural contacts between ordinary Lithuanians and Russians remain the same, Linas Linkevičius said in an interview to the daily Lietuvos Žinios.

"We may be Kremlinphobes, but we are not Russophobes. We speak Russian, we like their culture and know it quite well. We have invited Russian intellectuals, politicians, journalists and scientists to forums (in Lithuania) for the third year. They willingly come and feel comfortable here," Linkevičius said.

"We continue to maintain dialogue with our neighbour Russia. Because the road of confrontation leads nowhere," he said.

Lithuania always tries to build better and more constructive bilateral relations, but wants these relations "to be based on certain principles, values and international rules, rather than on those invented by Russia", the country's top diplomat said.

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