Prime Minister: Lithuania aims at closer cooperation with strategic partners

Date

2018 06 07

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Prime Minister Saulius Skvernelis has met with representatives of the American-Israeli Public Affairs Committee to discuss cooperation with key strategic partners.

The Prime Minister has started the meeting by pointing out the importance of Lithuania’s relations with both the United States and Israel and welcomed the growing momentum in the cooperation with both states.

‘We share with the United States strategic partnership, we are allies in NATO. For Lithuania as well as for the rest of the Baltic countries the United States have always been and will be the main security partner and security guarantor. We seek permanent presence of the US forces and capabilities in our region. We trust our efforts will be noted in the upcoming NATO summit just like our solutions to strengthen the security of Lithuania and the Baltic States. The transatlantic unity is not mere words for us, therefore, it is important that this unity is confirmed by action at the meeting’, said the Head of Government.

Prime Minister Saulius Skvernelis has pointed out the importance of this year for both Lithuania and Israel, as the State of Israel is commemorating the 70th anniversary, while Lithuania is celebrating the centennial of the restoration of the State. In this context, it is key to focus not only on the growing relations, strong mutual support in the international arena but also people-to-people contacts, and the growing need for cooperation in the fields of innovation and new technologies.

The Prime Minister has noted Lithuania’s dedication to invest in its security, Lithuania’s defence spending has already reached more than 2 percent of GDP, the country has been upgrading its military equipment, buying it from Israel and the United States.

On energy, it has been pointed out that for some years now Lithuania has enjoyed the operation of a liquefied gas terminal, which has enabled Lithuania to transport gas from all over the world. It is symbolic that one of the first shipments from the USA to Europe landed in Lithuania. The Prime Minister has expressed his conviction about similar thing happening with Israel, when it is time.

The American-Israeli Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) was established back in 1963, its main goal is to work with the US executive and legislative authorities to strengthen US-Israeli relations.

This is the first time that this reputable public organisation has visited Lithuania. The delegation includes over 100 influential entrepreneurs and public figures, it is led by Council President Lillian Pinkus. This time, the representatives of the Committee are visiting six countries: Germany, Poland, the Czech Republic, Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia.