VILNIUS – France, which currently holds the EU's rotating presidency, is expected to show leadership in Europe, especially in the face of Russia's unjustifiable war on Ukraine, Foreign Minister Gabrielius Landsbergis told French parliamentarians in Vilnius on Wednesday.
"We cannot afford to turn a blind eye to reality for the sake of our own convenience, nor can we tire of fighting. Putin wants to impose his own reality on Europe, so we must prove that we are stronger and that we do not have the slightest doubt about our strength," he said.
Landsbergis noted that "it is now essential to preserve the unity of the democratic world, to continue to provide full support to Ukraine, including military assistance, to continue to step up pressure on Russia, and to ensure the defenses of NATO's eastern flank", according to the press release.
"Putin and his regime must be held accountable for the war crimes committed in Ukraine. It is our shared responsibility to ensure that justice prevails," the minister said.
"At the same time, we have an enormous responsibility to use all possible means to stop the atrocities in Ukraine," he added.
Landsbergis' meeting with Jean-Louis Bourlanges, chairman of the National Assembly's Foreign Affairs Committee, focused on Russia's military aggression in Ukraine and measures to end it, support for Ukraine and its people, the reception of refugees from Ukraine in Europe, the strengthening of NATO's eastern flank, relations between the EU and China, and bilateral cooperation between Lithuania and France, according to the press release.
Earlier on Wednesday, the delegation from the National Assembly met with Defense Minister Arvydas Anusauskas, who also said that Lithuania expected France’s leadership in bolstering NATO's eastern flank.