Lietuva in brief - 2009-01-28

  • 2009-01-28
Most Lithuanians think the country should remain a nuclear energy state and support a new nuclear power plant, a poll commissioned by the national energy company Leo LT has shown. Some 61 percent of those polled think a new nuclear facility is a good idea. About 12 percent thought Lithuania should buy electricity abroad and 27 percent had no opinion, Leo LT said in a statement.

A year-long Vilnius Heritage of Handicrafts project intended to present the city's ancient craft traditions kicks off on Jan. 31. One of the organizers of the project, Vilnius European Capital of Culture 2009, said it would consist of 12 educational events in the Lithuanian capital, a two-day fair and a publication on Vilnius handicrafts. The events will cover the crafts of furriers, goldsmiths, tailors, blacksmiths, shoemakers, weavers, potters and glaziers, bookbinders and cooks.

The body of Darius Arbaciauskas, the legal secretary to a Lithuanian judge at the European Court of Justice, has been found in the river Meuse by Belgian officers. The secretary, who was declared missing in mid-December, is believed to have committed suicide by jumping off a bridge in Namur where his car was found on Dec. 12. Arbaciauskas, 40, was last seen on the evening of Dec. 8 as he was leaving the building of the European Court of Justice. Lithuanian police were informed about the missing person by his sister.

The largest part of EU funds to Lithuania's education and science for 2009 will go toward improving the quality of studies, science infrastructure and promoting science-business cooperation. Over 1.62 million litas will be used in 2009 from the 2.79 billion litas provisioned for Lithuania for the 2007-2013 programming period, Education and Science Minister Gintaras Steponavicius said.

The negative birth-death ratio during the months of January to November of 2008 in Lithuania resulted in depopulation by 7,800 inhabitants, with an almost 700-person drop in the population of Vilnius County. The natural population decline in Vilnius County was 696, the Statistics Department said, a figure constituting 436 less deaths than registered during this period in 2007. The natural population growth of Vilnius city, however, was 821. The number is an improvement on 2007 however with 18,800 less inhabitants at the end of 2007 than at the end of 2006. The population is currently at 3.35 million.

Lithuanian theater director Oskaras Korsunovas was the first to be awarded France's Chevalier Order of Arts and Literature, the French Embassy in Lithuania reported. Korsunovas was conferred France's honorable award on Jan. 30 by the country's Ambassador Francois Laumonier on the occasion of the Comedie-Francaise theater group's visit to Lithuania. The Lithuanian stage director has worked in collaboration with Comedie-Francaise. France's Chevalier Order of Arts and Literature is awarded to those distinguished in the domains of art and literature.

The Vilnius Regional Court has ruled to extend the custody term for one of the suspects in Lithuania's Medininkai check-point massacre case Konstantin Mikhailov by three months. Lithuania's Prosecutor General's Office has recently closed an almost 18 year long investigation on the case of Mikhailov, an ex-militiaman of the Soviet Union Interior Ministry Special Purpose Police Squad (OMON).