VILNIUS – Lithuanian Prime Minister Ingrida Simonyte has rejected President Gitanas Nauseda's recent criticism of dual standards and suggested that the presidential office should assess its own position.
"I will try to comment ethically. It would probably be good if reproaches for the ministers who failed to implement the sanctions in Lithuania, which are not meant for Lithuania, were not made by people whose opinion on the EU sanctions, which would have already been applied to Belaruskali fertilizers, was not very strong," Simonyte told reported at the parliament on Thursday.
On Wednesday, Nauseda called the prime ministers' decision to keep the foreign and transport ministers in place a failure and also said the existing ruling majority set high standards for ministers representing the Lithuanian Farmers and Greens Union curing the last term but now "those standards have now gone fairly low".
"I remember when the ruling coalition was in the opposition, it set very high standards for the then ministers, and now those standards have gone fairly low. The question is whether it is because they are applied to oneself, and not to others?" the president said.
In response, Prime Minister Simonyte said the presidential office should itself evaluate its position on the transit of Belarusian fertilizers when European sanctions were considered.
"Since I heard comments on … some dual standards, it would be good if that was also self-applicable," the prime minister said.
The delfi.lt news website reported earlier that Lithuanian presidential office maintained in June that the European Union should not impose sanctions for Belarusian fertilizers.
On Tuesday, Simonyte decided not to accept the resignation letters of Foreign Minister Gabrielius Landsbergis and Transport Minister Marius Skuodis who voiced last week their readiness to stepd down and accept responsibility for the still ongoing transit of Belaruskali fertilizers via Lithuania, despite the fact that the US sanctions came into force on December 8.