On 19 January at the Embassy of Sweden in Vilnius, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania Linas Linkevičius opened the annual Nordic-Baltic Conference dedicated to regional issues and challenges. The event is traditionally held at the beginning of the year and brings together politicians, representatives of academia and embassies. The meeting reviewed issues related to regional security, society’s resilience to propaganda, hybrid threats, and energy security.
“The creation and consolidation of the state of Lithuania 100 years ago would be unthinkable without the Jewish contribution. We respect Jewish traditions and foster Jewish heritage,” said the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania Linas Linkevičius in a meeting with the Executive Director of the American Jewish Committee (AJC) David Harris.
On 15-16 January in Sofia, the Political Director of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania Asta Skaisgirytė attended an informal meeting of Political Directors of the EU’s Foreign Ministries. The meeting was organised by Bulgaria, which holds the Presidency of the Council of the EU from 1 January. The EU Political Directors met to align EU foreign policy priorities for the first half of 2018 and discussed issues related to Russia, the Western Balkans, and the situation in the Middle East.
An informal Snow Meeting brought together Lithuanian and foreign security policy experts on 11-12 January in Trakai district. The meeting discussed the main challenges facing the transatlantic community and ways to respond to them.
The UN General Assembly resolution on Status of Jerusalem, adopted on 21 December 2017, reaffirms the provisions of relevant UN resolutions, adopted earlier on this issue. The resolution also reflects a long-held common position of the European Union on this issue.
On 18 December at his meeting with the OECD delegation headed by Nicola Bonucci, coordinator for Lithuania’s accession, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania, Linas Linkevičius, discussed the most important issues in relation to Lithuania’s accession to the OECD and the remaining tasks. Lithuania aims to be invited to become a member next year.
On 13 December in Washington, D.C., the Political Director of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania Asta Skaisgirytė discussed strengthening transatlantic cooperation, international and regional security. She participated in the Political Directors’ Meeting of Foreign Ministries in the framework of the Enhanced Partnership in Northern Europe (e-PINE), as well as the Baltic-Nordic-U.S. defence policy dialogue.
At the Eleventh World Trade Organization Ministerial Conference (MC11) on 11 December in Buenos Aires, the Vice-Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania Albinas Zananavičius met with the Director-General of the WTO Roberto Azevêdo and noted that Lithuania strongly believed that multilateral trade rules were beneficial and dedicated special attention to their implementation.
On the initiative of the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania Linas Linkevičius, an informal meeting of EU Foreign Ministers with the Prime Minister of Israel Benjamin Netanyahu took place on 11 November in Brussels. This was the first meeting of the Israeli Prime Minister with heads of EU institutions and Foreign Ministers from EU member states after a 22-year break.
On 7 December, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania Linas Linkevičius participated in the 24th OSCE Ministerial Council in Vienna and drew attention to the insufficient progress in resolving the Russia-provoked conflict in Ukraine, as well as called for finding new solutions to it.
The Chancellor of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania Jūratė Raguckienė attended the meeting of Secretaries of State (Chancellors) of Ministries of Foreign Affairs of the European Union from 30 November to 1 December, in Sofia, Bulgaria.
On 29-30 November, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania Linas Linkevičius attended the fifth African Union - European Union (AU-EU) summit in Abidjan, the capital of Ivory Coast. The event brought together EU and African leaders to discuss the future direction for the strengthened continental cooperation, as well as issues related to peace and security, migration, economic development, mobilization of investments, etc. The leaders from the two continents focused on investing in young people.
On 20-21 November, the Vice-Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania Darius Skusevičius attended the 13th Asian-European Meeting (ASEM) Foreign Ministers’ Meeting in Nay Pyi Taw (Myanmar) and drew the attention of the ASEM partners to the conflict in Ukraine.
On 20 November, EU ministers secretly voted on the relocation of the UK-based EU agencies on the margins of the General Affairs Council (Art. 50) meeting in Brussels.
On 20 November, the Vice-Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania Albinas Zananavičius attended the General Affairs Council meeting in Brussels, which began preparations for the December European Council by discussing a provisional agenda.