Lithuanian PM, EC president discuss pandemic, border situation, China

  • 2022-01-05
  • BNS/TBT Staff

VILNIUS – Lithuanian Prime Minister Ingrida Simonyte and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen on Tuesday had a telephone conversation to discuss vaccination and efforts to curb the pandemic, the situation on the EU-Belarus border, and China’s trade restrictions on Lithuania, the prime minister's press service said on Wednesday.

The EC president welcomed Lithuania’s efforts to share vaccines with countries in need, and discussed the importance of a booster dose of the vaccine in the fight against the pandemic.

"We have discussed with the President of the European Commission how the European Union can speed up vaccination outside the EU. We will not be safe until the EU’s neighbors and other countries whose governments have not had sufficient access to vaccines are safe," Simonyte was quoted as saying in the statement.

Lithuania’s actions in response to the hybrid attack of the Lukashenko regime were also discussed. The Lithuanian prime minister thanked the European Commission and other EU institutions for their joint work in addressing the problems caused by illegal migration, organizing migrant return, and concentrating efforts to strengthen and better control the EU’s external border.

A possible international response to China’s trade restrictions against Lithuania was also discussed during the conversation. It was agreed that the European Commission and Lithuanian officials would continue to coordinate their actions in dealing with the issues discussed.

China has been angered by the recent opening of a Taiwanese representative office in Vilnius.

More than 4,200 irregular migrants crossed into Lithuania from Belarus illegally last year. Lithuania and other Western countries accuse the Minsk regime of orchestrating the unprecedented migration influx, calling it "hybrid aggression".