Posts published in Day: December 12, 2019

China’s soft power: Pro-Beijing screening in Vilnius attracts government figures and officials

Thursday, December 12, 2019

A screening of a pro-Beijing documentary about Tibet in Vilnius attracted high ranking Lithuanian government officials and MPs. Meanwhile, the Baltic nation is fighting off attempts by China to establish a foothold in the country, according to senior politicians. The documentary depicted Tibet’s landscapes and “its diligent people, while documenting the challenges of modernisation in a traditional society,” according to the Chinese state-run news agency Xinhua. The film produced by…

Lithuania lowers conscription age

Thursday, December 12, 2019

Young men between 18 and 23 will be eligible for compulsory military service in Lithuania after MPs voted to lower conscription age. Under the current rules, men between 19 and 26 can be called up for military service. The minister of defence has previously said that older conscripts suffer greater disruption to their civilian life. “Young men would perform [the compulsory initial military service] before creating families, starting careers,” Minister…

Planespotting site for photographers and skygazers opens at Vilnius Airport

Thursday, December 12, 2019

Vilnius Airport has opened a planespotting site catered for families, enthusiasts and photographers, according to a press release. The site includes an elevated part adapted for photographers, as well as a shelter and benches. In 2020, information stands will display information on most frequently seen aircrafts, the machinery used at the airport and a general plan of the area. A children’s playground is also planned for next year.   Th…

Lower election threshold in Lithuania – more democracy or chaos?

Thursday, December 12, 2019

The Lithuanian legislature, Seimas, has lowered this week the parliamentary election threshold to 3 per cent for political parties and 5 per cent for coalitions. Supporters of the initiative touted it as a sign of mature democracy in the country, while its opponents called it a Trojan horse designed for political parties on the margins of politics to enter Seimas. Previous attempts failed The majority of analysts that BNN spoke…

What is Ventspils Development Agency and what will its members do now?

Thursday, December 12, 2019

Among the organizations against which US Department of Treasury Office for Foreign Asset Control (OFAC) has adopted sanctions is also Ventspils Development Agency (VAA). In accordance with OFAC issued Global Magnitsky General Licence Nr.1, global partners have 30 days to cease all cooperation with this organization. However, among VAA members are multiple companies owned by Ventspils municipality. For years they’ve paid generous fees to VAA. Membership in VAA is not…

Trump has to join Latvia’s ‘loser table’ in US comedy sketch (Video)

Thursday, December 12, 2019

Saturday Night Live, a popular comedy sketch show in the US, took a dig at the American president by turning the NATO summit into a cafeteria and having Donald Trump sit at a “loser table” with Latvia. After a  video   emerged from the NATO summit earlier in December that saw the leaders of Canada, the United Kingdom, and France mock Trump, several US comedy shows took a dig at…

Warning strike planned after talks for reinstating school principal fail

Thursday, December 12, 2019

Negotiations to reinstate the principal at Kiviõli Secondary School No. 1 in Ida-Viru County between the board of trustees and the Lüganuse rural municipality government failed to reach an agreement on Wednesday, and teachers are now planning a warning strike next week. The teachers and board of trustees of Kiviõli Secondary School No. 1 are demanding the municipal government restore headteacher Heidi Uustalu to the director’s office. The municipal government…

Indian police fire teargas at citizenship bill protesters

Thursday, December 12, 2019

Indian police have fired blanks on protesters as thousands ignored a curfew in the north-east of the country in fresh demonstrations against contentious new citizenship legislation. Officials said on Thursday about 20 to 30 people have been hurt in the protests in recent days, with vehicles torched and police firing teargas and charging the crowds with heavy wooden sticks. Up to 5,000 paramilitary forces were deployed in the city of…

EU leaders meet to try to agree on carbon neutrality by 2050

Thursday, December 12, 2019

European leaders meeting at a summit in Brussels will make a new attempt to set the European Union on course for carbon neutrality by 2050, in a test of the bloc’s credibility on the climate emergency. Hours before EU leaders were due to arrive on Thursday, Greenpeace activists unfurled a banner on the side of the summit venue warning of the climate emergency. Activists in climbing gear scaled the Europa…

Legal Affairs Committee supports lifting judge immunity for administrative violation cases

Thursday, December 12, 2019

Saeima’s Legal Affairs Committee supported prior to the second reading legislative drafts to the Law on Judicial Power and Law on Judges Disciplinary Liability intended to lift the immunity of judges in administrative violation cases, as confirmed by Justice Ministry. To further increase balance of judges’ independence and responsibility, the developed amendments provide for lifting their immunity in cases of administrative violations. At the same time, amendments also provide for…