On 25 April in Brussels, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania Linas Linkevičius attended the Conference “Supporting the Future of Syria and the Region”. The conference, which is hosted by the EU and co-chaired with the United Nations, aims at keeping the international community’s attention and response to the Syrian crisis on top of the international agenda, and at encouraging the full implementation of the existing commitments.
Linkevičius presented Lithuania’s commitment to help the most affected Syrian people by this war. Since the beginning of the war in Syria, Lithuania has allocated more than EUR 258, 000 in humanitarian aid for Syria. In accordance with the EU’s agreement with Turkey, our country is committed to providing EUR 5.2 million by 2019.
“A long-term solution in Syria is possible only through ensuring that perpetrators of crimes against civilians or other violations of international law can be punished,” Linkevičius said.
In addition, Linkevičius reaffirmed Lithuania’s further support for the International, Impartial and Independent Mechanism (IIIM). The United Nations General Assembly has created this mechanism to assist in investigating and prosecuting international crimes committed in Syria since 2011.
In 2018-2019, a development cooperation project is being implemented to help young people in Syria. Harsh living conditions have an especially negative effect on young people, who find no opportunities to pursue their education in their home country. They are offered a possibility to acquire tertiary education in Lithuania. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has allocated EUR 35, 000 for the project. When the project is implemented, 9 young people from the Middle East countries, including Syria, will have an opportunity to participate in a postgraduate programme in Lithuania.