Baltics welcome new British PM, Cabinet members

  • 2016-07-15
  • BNS/TBT Staff/Riga/Tallinn/Vilnius

Ministers in all three Baltic States have sent well-wishes and voiced hopes for continued partnership with the UK  following the appointments of several new British Cabinet members.

Lithuania Prime Minister Algirdas Butkevicius congratulated Theresa May on her new position as British prime minister, saying that he expects the two nations to continue building their strong bilateral political and economic ties and defense partnership.

"I am confident that partnership, mutual trust, and close co-operation shared for many years between Lithuania and the United Kingdom will continue to progress in the most friendly spirit," Butkevicius said in a letter.

"I am sure that with your premiership, strong bilateral political and economic ties, reliable partnership in the area of defense, close people-to-people relations will continue to flourish," he stated.

May announced on Wednesday night the lineup of her Cabinet in which Philip Hammond, foreign minister in the David Cameron Cabinet, will be minister of finance, and Boris Johnson, former London mayor and Brexit advocate, will be foreign minister.

Lithuanian Foreign Minister Linas Linkevicius on Thursday expressed his wish for strengthened bilateral relations as he congratulated Johnson.

"I hope that close bilateral relations between Lithuania and the United Kingdom will continue to be strengthened in the areas of security, defense, and economic co-operation," he remarked in a congratulatory letter.

The minister also wrote that Britain is a key ally in the implementation of security and stability in the Baltic Sea region, in Europe overall, and worldwide.

Linkevicius voiced his confidence that the UK will keep playing a vital role in European affairs and advocating free trade, innovation, competitiveness, and economic growth.

He also hopes that the Lithuanian community in the United Kingdom will make a meaningful contribution to the advancement of the bilateral dialogue.

Latvian Foreign Minister Edgars Rinkevics (Unity) welcomed Johnson’s appointment in a message.

“I congratulate Boris Johnson on becoming Great Britain's foreign secretary. I hope for close co-operation to respond to the many challenges our world is facing right now,” Rinkevics stated.

Estonian Foreign Minister Marina Kaljurand on Wednesday evening congratulated Johnson via Twitter.

"Congratulations to good colleague Philip Hammond and welcome to the foreign ministers' club, Boris Johnson. Looking forward to meeting you at the next foreign affairs council," Kaljurand said in her post.

May on Wednesday replaced David Cameron as Britain’s prime minister. Cameron resigned from the post following the country’s vote to leave the European Union.