Vilnius supports closer EU-Armenia integration – Lithuanian president

  • 2022-05-20
  • BNS/TBT Staff

VILNIUS – Lithuania supports closer integration between the European Union and Armenia, President Gitanas Nauseda said on Friday. 

As part of his official visit to Yerevan, Nauseda met with his Armenian counterpart, Vahagn Khachaturyan, to discuss bilateral cooperation, the security situation in the Caucasus region, democratic reforms in Armenia, and EU-Armenia relations, the Lithuanian president's office said in a press release.

"Especially now, when Ukraine is fighting not only for its sovereignty but also for European values and democracy, keeping the EU's Eastern Partnership policy active is essential," it quoted Nauseda as saying.

"Closer cooperation between the EU and Armenia and the implementation of democratic reforms will contribute to the country's resilience, security, social and economic prosperity," he said. 

Nauseda noted that bilateral relations between Lithuania and Armenia have "untapped potential" and "expressed his hope that both the direct flight between Vilnius and Yerevan and the political will at the top level will boost bilateral cooperation".

The president expressed his support for Armenia's efforts to carry out democratic reforms and noted that the country has already made progress, but it is important to continue the reforms.

He said that "Lithuania is ready to share its experience and help Armenia on the path towards democratic reforms".

The Lithuanian and Armenian leaders also discussed the security situation in the Caucasus region.

In the fall of 2020, Armenia and Azerbaijan fought a six-week war over the disputed region of Nagorno-Karabakh that killed more than 6,500 people.

Hostilities ended with a Russia-brokered ceasefire deal under which Armenia ceded several areas it had controlled for decades and Moscow deployed a peacekeeping contingent in the region.

Nauseda "stressed that Lithuania stood for a peaceful settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict and welcomed the direct dialogue between Armenia and Azerbaijan with efforts to normalize bilateral relations", according to the press release.