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On Tuesday the Seimas planned to return to the issue of legal immunity for MP Viktor Uspaskich, reports ELTA. While discussing the agenda, MPs approved the proposal of the leader of the Seimas opposition, Andrius Kubilius, to include this issue in the agenda and to complete the establishment of a temporary investigation commission. Fifty-nine MPs voted in favor of this proposal, 20 against with 20 abstentions. On Nov. 19, Lithuania’s Parliament failed to set up a commission which would consider if to consent to allow prosecution or other restrictions of the freedom of Labor Party MP Uspaskich. A draft resolution on setting up a commission was not approved by the Seimas: 43 MPs voted in favor, 18 against with 28 abstentions. Acting as a privileged state within a state, a member of the Seimas cannot be prosecuted, held criminally liable, arrested or have his freedom otherwise restricted without the consent of the fellow members.
Winner of the Olympic Games in London, Lithuanian swimmer Ruta Meilutyte, has been selected as 2013 Best European Young (under 19 years) Athlete for the second year in a row, reports ELTA. Meilutyte was voted in during the 42nd General Assembly of European Olympic Committees in Rome. The sixteen-year-old swimmer received the Piotr Nurowski Prize (named after the President of the Polish Olympic Committee who died in the Polish Air Force plane crash in Russia in 2010) and a 12,000 euro grant for training and studies. Meilutyte won gold and silver in the 2013 World Aquatics Championships in Spain and four gold and two silver medals in the 2013 World Junior Championships in the United Arab Emirates. This year the Lithuanian swimmer has set new World and European records.
On Nov. 22, President Dalia Grybauskaite together with children and village librarians lit up the first Christmas tree and announced the beginning of the Christmas of Books campaign, reports ELTA. Sixty village librarians from various Lithuanian regions attended the event in the Presidential Palace. “I am sincerely happy that we meet Christmas with our enlighteners - librarians from Lithuanian villages and small towns. Every one of you creates a small miracle every day - by bringing the community together, encouraging children and adults to open a book, promoting traditions,” said Grybauskaite in her welcome speech. The traditional Christmas of Books campaign initiated by Grybauskaite is taking place for the third time. The campaign encourages donating new books to villages and town libraries. The libraries of the villages and towns lack works of fiction, encyclopedias and catalogues. A special list of titles has been prepared through the collective effort of more than 1,000 local libraries. From Nov. 19 to Jan. 6 special stands will be put up at the Vaga, Pegasas, Knygu Namai, and Humanitas book stores.