Lithuania's Landsbergis sees no point in Russian ambassadors in EU countries

  • 2023-01-31
  • BNS/TBT Staff

VILNIUS - Lithuanian Foreign Minister Gabrielius Landsbergis says he sees no point in EU member states having Russian ambassadors in their countries.

"In many cases, there is little use in having an ambassador, a Russian ambassador, in any European capital. Because as we have seen, in most cases it's no longer a diplomatic institution, it's an institution of propaganda, covering up crimes of war and in general promoting a genocidal agenda," the minister told reporters at a joint press conference with his Baltic and Polish counterparts in Riga on Tuesday.

In his words, not so long ago Lithuania was the only country without a Russian ambassador. "Now we are in the group of the Baltic countries," he said.

Last week, Estonia and Latvia announced their decisions to expel Russian ambassadors. That was Tallinn's tit-for-tat move in response to the Kremlin's decision, and Latvia expressed solidarity with its Baltic neighbor.

Lithuania downgraded its diplomatic relations with Russia in April, 2022 in response to the massacre in Kyiv's suburb of Bucha.

Landsbergis does not rule out that more countries might follow suit after seeing what is happening in Ukraine, adding, however, that it "takes time" and different perspectives.

For their part, the Polish, Latvian and Estonian ministers say that as long as Russia continues the war in Ukraine, diplomatic relations with the Kremlin have no future.