Lietuva in brief - 2006-02-15

  • 2006-02-15
President Valdas Adamkus has signed a decree to appoint Vytautas Grigaravicius for a second five-year tenure as police commissioner general, a presidential spokeswoman said. Under police law, the commissioner general is appointed by the president upon government proposal. The police chief is directly subordinate to the interior minister, and answers to the president. The Cabinet of Ministers nominated Grigaravicius as candidate on Jan. 30.

A bag found near the President's Office in Vilnius on Feb. 10, which, as it later turned out, contained a whisky bottle, caused security trouble. A guard noticed the suspicious bag in a flower pot. Raimundas Kairys, head of the VIP Security Department, told the Baltic News Service that a metal detector had reacted to objects inside the bag and, therefore, it was decided to check the bag more carefully. After the item was x-rayed, a bottle of Johnnie Walker Red Label whisky was revealed. President Valdas Adamkus was not at the Office when the incident occurred.

British police officer Kevin William Pitt, who was fined for urinating on the President's Office four years ago, plans to file a complaint against the Baltic state at the European Court of Human Rights. The Lithuanian Supreme Administrative Court rejected his appeal to reopen the case. The ruling is final. On Feb. 6, 2002, a Vilnius court imposed Pitt with a fine of 200 litas (58 euros) for urinating in public the night before. The court ruled that the police officer had disrespected society and violated public order. The Briton paid the fine without protest, but started filing complaints several years after the incident. Two drunken British citizens - police officer Kerry Anderson, then 43, and Pitt, then 51 - were detained in front of the President's Office after security staff saw them on surveillance cameras. Police brought no charges against Anderson, who had not yet begun urinating, interrogating him as witness in the case.

The Office of the Equal Opportunities Ombudsman may open an inquiry into the impossibility of sending Valentine's Day kisses to a person of the same sex through an Internet Web site. The office said the Friends section of allows sending kisses to only the opposite sex. Equal Opportunities Ombudsman Ausrine Burneikiene has yet to decide whether an inquiry should be started. The office received a complaint about the situation on Feb. 14 's the first over sexual orientation this year. Last year, the office looked into 133 possible discrimination cases: residents filed 128 complaints and 5 investigations were carried out at the office's initiative.