President of Lithuania Dalia Grybauskaitė says Saulius Skvernelis' decision to remain in office as the interior minister is "his choice".
Dalia Grybauskaitė ir Saulius Skvernelis
© DELFI / Šarūnas Mažeika

"It is the minister's choice," the press service of the president has relayed Grybauskaitė's opinion.

Skvernelis said he had announced about his resignation mostly due to criticism from President Dalia Grybauskaitė.

As reported, on Monday the interior minister met with Prime Minister Algirdas Butkevičius and decided to stay in office, athough he had submitted a letter of resignation a week earlier. On Wednesday, the prime minister will discuss the issue with the president.

Skvernelis was rebuked for the incident when a fugitive escaped from police custody with an officer's assault rifle. Grybauskaitė called the incident pathetic and said the interior minister showed poor political standards by avoiding to take political responsibility.

"I can only regret that it is not the first time that the minister (Saulius Skvernelis - ELTA) demonstrates poor political standards when attempting to give comments or that he does not assume and does not understand his personal responsibility," the president said at the time. She later called Skvernelis' resignation announcement "an election campaign".

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