Posts published in Day: March 18, 2019

Police looking into verbal attack on head of Estonian Jewish Congregation

Monday, March 18, 2019

Several Estonian news portals have reported that Rabbi Shmuel Kot, head of the Estonian Jewish Congregation, was verbally attacked on his way to the Tallinn Synagogue on Saturday. According to a friend of Mr Kot, who wrote about the incident on social media, an Estonian-speaking man shouted antisemitic slurs at the rabbi and his family. The police are investigating the incident. The reason why Mr Kot had not reported the…

Week in Lithuania. N-plant invites bids for repository construction contract

Monday, March 18, 2019

Lithuania’s Ignalina Nuclear Power Plant (INPP), which was shut down a decade ago and is now being decommissioned, on Thursday, March 14, invited bids for the construction of a 100-million-euro near surface repository for low and intermediate level short-lived radioactive waste, known as the B25-2 project. The winning bidder will have to build two groups of reinforced concrete vaults for a final disposal of up to 70,000 cubic meters of…

Human Rights breaches in Iran, Kazakhstan and Guatemala

Monday, March 18, 2019

MEPs deplore human rights violations and all forms of political repression in Iran, Kazakhstan and Guatemala. On Thursday, the European Parliament adopted three resolutions taking stock of the human rights situation in Iran, Kazakhstan and Guatemala. Iran must stop criminalising the work of women’s rights defenders The European Parliament urge Iran to stop criminalising the work of women’s rights defenders, including the work done by those peacefully protesting against the…

US-backed forces admit to ‘difficulties’ beating ISIS in Syria

Monday, March 18, 2019

U.S.-backed forces fighting to recapture the last Islamic State outpost in Syria admitted Sunday they were facing “difficulties” defeating the extremists, saying they were being slowed by mines, tunnels and concerns over harming women and children among the militants. The battle to capture the extremist group’s last patch of territory in eastern Syria — a collection of tents covering foxholes and underground tunnels in the village of Baghouz — has…

UK will remain close cooperation partner to Latvia also after Brexit – Rinkevics

Monday, March 18, 2019

On Friday in London, Latvian Foreign Minister Edgars Rinkevics met with Vice Speaker of the House of Lords of the United Kingdom, Chairman of the European Union Committee, Lord Boswell, de facto deputy Prime Minister David Lidington, and the Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt for discussions on the bilateral relations between Latvia and the UK’s preparations for Brexit, LETA was informed by the Foreign Ministry. In a discussion with the British…

Hybrid attack response drills kicking off in southern Lithuania

Monday, March 18, 2019

A five-day hybrid attack response exercise is kicking off in southern Lithuania on Monday. Around 600 troops from the Lithuanian Grand Duchess Birute Uhlan Battalion will take part in the tactical drills in the town and district of Alytus and around the town of Lazdijai, Lieutenant Colonel Darius Meilunas, the unit’s commander, told BNS. “Under the scenario, states hostile to Lithuania will escalate unrest within the country, using hybrid and…

Baltics cannot rely on Germany anymore

By Adomas Abromaitis on Monday, March 18, 2019

On March 29 Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia will celebrate 15 years of becoming NATO member states. The way to the alliance membership was not simple for newly born independent countries. They have reached great success in fulfilling many of NATO demands: they have considerably increased their defence expenditures, renewed armaments and increased the number of military personnel. In turn, they get used to rely on more powerful member states, their…

Lithuanian president calls PM’s Astravyets letter

Monday, March 18, 2019

Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaite on Sunday called Prime Minister Saulius Skvernelis’ recent letter to Belarus, suggesting converting the nearly-complete Astravyets nuclear power plant, under construction near the Lithuanian border, “anticonstitutional” as the country’s main law states that the president deals with key foreign policy issues. “The Constitution says that decisions are made by the president only, and foreign policy is conducted together with the government. Since that issue had not…

New Estonian government intends to reject EU migrant quotas

Monday, March 18, 2019

The new government being formed in Estonia has promised to revive a separate border guard service and reject the migrant quotas set by the European Union, Martin Helme, a delegate from the country’s Conservative People’s Party, announced on social media on Saturday. During talks on Saturday the coalition “agreed, first of all, that immigration subsequently will be under Estonia’s full control, there will be no quotas,” Helme said. “Further, we…

Interview: NATO commander on challenges of role in Estonia

By Giles Harris on Monday, March 18, 2019

Having already interviewed some of the personnel from the 1 YORKS battle group, the third such battle group to form, together with its NATO allies, the core of the alliance’s Enhanced Forward Presence (eFP), it made sense to catch up with the commander of the eFP, Col Giles Harris, formerly of the Welsh Guards. I was very privileged to be able to do just that, at the Estonian Defence Forces…