Posts published in Day: February 7, 2019

U.K., E.U. leaders spar during ‘robust’ Brexit talks

Thursday, February 7, 2019

British Prime Minister Theresa May and European Union Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker sparred on Thursday during “robust” talks on the U.K.’s Brexit plans, and agreed to hold more negotiations that could push the sealing of any deal to within a month of Britain’s scheduled departure. The two leaders agreed to meet for more talks “before the end of February to take stock of these discussions,” a joint statement said. Two years…

Russia: we would be open to U.S. proposals for new nuclear pact

Thursday, February 7, 2019

Russia would be prepared to consider new proposals from the United States to replace a suspended Cold War-era nuclear pact with a broader treaty that includes more countries, Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said on Thursday. Russia suspended the Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces (INF) treaty at the weekend after Washington announced it would withdraw in six months unless Russia ends what it says are violations of the pact, allegations rejected by…

Lithuanian president never promised to appoint Gudziunaite

Thursday, February 7, 2019

Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaite says she never promised Prime Minister Saulius Skvernelis that his environment minister candidate Irma Gudziunaite was fit to assume this position. But the president refrains from commenting on the prime minister’s statements that the president had directly promised Gudziunaite to appoint her. The presidential office’s statement comes in response to the prime minister’s claim that Grybauskaite rejected the pre-agreed candidate. “Before the meeting with the candidate,…

Saeima ratifies Convention against Trafficking in Human Organs

Thursday, February 7, 2019

Saeima today ratified the Council of Europe Convention against Trafficking in Human Organs, LETA was told at the parliamentary press office. The convention is intended to contribute to the eradication of the trafficking in human organs through the introduction of new offences supplementing the existing international legal instruments in the field of trafficking in human beings for the purpose of the removal of organs. The convention is one of the…

France recalls ambassador to Rome after Italian deputy PM met with ‘yellow vests’

Thursday, February 7, 2019

France’s foreign ministry said Thursday it had recalled its ambassador to Rome for consultations after a series of “provocations” by leaders of Italy’s populist government. “For several months France has been the subject of repeated accusations, unfounded attacks and outlandish claims,” the ministry said in a statement, calling them “unprecedented” since the end of World War II. It came one day after the French foreign ministry denounced as “unacceptable” a meeting between Italy’s Deputy…

Flu season in full swing, number of patients increases by 60%

Thursday, February 7, 2019

The flu season is in full swing: the number of people coming down with the flu increased by 60% over the last week, making for “average” seriousness and a “broader” spread of the infection, according to the Health Board. The average number of people falling ill per 100,000 was 487 last week, with above-average numbers of those affected in Tallinn as well as the Ida-Viru, Järva, Lääne, Rapla, Tartu and…

Chinese investments in Lithuania must be carefully assessed

Thursday, February 7, 2019

China’s proposed investments in Lithuania and threats they may pose must be carefully assessed, Prime Minister Saulius Skvernelis said on Thursday after intelligence agencies warned in their annual report about increasing activity by China’s intelligence and security services in the country. “It’s difficult to comment on the details, because I have access both to the public report and to non-public information, but we do assess these threats, especially when it comes to potential investments,”…

Vilnius adopts 2019 budget

Thursday, February 7, 2019

The City Council of Vilnius adopted on Wednesday the Lithuanian capital’s budget for 2019, with expenditure exceeding revenue by 5 million euros. The city’s revenue is expected to grow by 3.5 percent this year compared with 2018 to 611.717 million euros. Total revenue, including EU support and funds carried over from last year, is projected at 679.4 million euros, a rise of 9 percent year-on-year. Excluding national and EU grants, the budget…

Lithuania’s chief of defense to discuss expeditionary force plans in London

Thursday, February 7, 2019

Lithuania’s Chief of Defense Lieutenant General Jonas Vytautas Zukas is taking part in a conference of chiefs of defense of countries contributing to the UK-led Joint Expeditionary Force (JEF) in London on Thursday. The chiefs of defense of Denmark, Estonia, the United Kingdom, Latvia, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Norway, Finland and Sweden will have an in-depth discussion on possibilities for JEF deployment, capability development projects and plans, and draft combat training plan for the coming…

Raimonds Vejonis has met with Saeima faction heads to discuss his re-election

Thursday, February 7, 2019

Latvian President Raimonds Vejonis this week has had individual meetings with heads of Saeima factions and has discussed the issue of his re-election, the Latvian public television reported on Tuesday. Representatives of political parties are not ready to comment on the meetings, just confirmed that this issue has been discussed. New Unity, most believably, is not ready to support Vejonis. The Union of Greens and Farmers and Harmony are of…