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  • PiS election win may worsen relations between Vilnius and Warsaw
    Liekis says that PiS now consists of entirely different politicians than those who fostered extremely warm ties with Lithuania over a decade ago Speaking about the relations between Lithuania and Poland I am skeptical about their victory Liekis told BNS on Sunday PiS is now made up of entirely different people who are predatory They are politicians of different culture They are far more practical calculating value based and defending their interests Liekis said that Poland s new administration will actively react to indignation expressed by various Polish organisations in Poland as well as petitions Any minor outcry or indignation in our country will immediately trigger a relevant reaction in Poland as the drive to take care of Poles abroad is very strong within the party he continued In Liekis opinion a government consisting of PiS members may support the Electoral Action of Poles in Lithuania In terms of values the PiS and the Electoral Action of Poles in Lithuania are like twins The Electoral Action of Poles in Lithuania is very close to the Lithuanian conservatives in terms of its platform he added Liekis added the changes in the Polish government may lead to more productive cooperation on security matters Comments Related Articles Linkevicius to replace Grybauskaite at London conference Ukrainian NSDC Secretary Russia waging hybrid warfare on EU Lithuanian Health Minister to resign over corruption scandal Subscribe Advertise Log In Please enter your username and password Forgot your password Login Related Articles NATO to bolster presence in Eastern Europe Lithuanian Foreign Minister slams Ukraine over insufficient anti corruption measures Refugee family relocated to Latvia left one child behind in Eritrea Report NATO would lose against Russia in invasion of Baltic states Subscribe A subscription to The Baltic Times is a cost effective way of staying in touch with

    Original URL path: http://www.baltictimes.com/pis_election_win_may_worsen_relations_between_vilnius_and_warsaw/ (2016-02-13)
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  • Grybauskaite to Israel - do not believe Putin's words
    what they do Grybauskaite added Putin s actions in Syria is not a war against Islamic State but is an attempt to support the regime of Syrian President Bashar al Assad She also said the West should rethink its actions with regard to Russia According to Grybauskaite the lack of leadership in the Western world has led to a vacuum that Putin is striving to fill I think that the problem of a lack of leadership is seen not only in your region but also in Europe Exactly because of that we ve got the very difficult situation in Ukraine and we still have a difficult situation on our borders in the Russian region Kaliningrad where Russia is exercising and trying to frighten us I think the West which was trying to stick only to sanctions probably did not do everything possible We ve got a mess in Libya now we are facing probably an even larger mess in Syria I think for us in the West we have to rethink our actions she concluded Comments Related Articles Linkevicius to replace Grybauskaite at London conference Ukrainian NSDC Secretary Russia waging hybrid warfare on EU Lithuanian Health Minister to resign over corruption scandal Subscribe Advertise Log In Please enter your username and password Forgot your password Login Related Articles NATO to bolster presence in Eastern Europe Lithuanian Foreign Minister slams Ukraine over insufficient anti corruption measures Refugee family relocated to Latvia left one child behind in Eritrea Report NATO would lose against Russia in invasion of Baltic states Subscribe A subscription to The Baltic Times is a cost effective way of staying in touch with the latest Baltic news and views enabling you full access from anywhere with an Internet connection Subscribe Now About The Baltic Times The Baltic Times is

    Original URL path: http://www.baltictimes.com/grybauskaite_to_israel_-_do_not_believe_putin_s_words/ (2016-02-13)
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  • Lithuanian Interior Ministers calls for zero-tolerance drink driving
    for a zero tolerance policy on drink driving Skvernelis called for a total ban and added for a zero blood alcohol content limit should be introduced for drivers I believe we ll have to shift to a zero tolerance policy he told Ziniu Radijas As of January 2015 the zero blood alcohol content requirement is in place for beginner drivers taxi and motorbike drivers and also HGV drivers At present alcohol content in the blood of the remaining drivers should not exceed 0 4 According to Skvernelis a number of drivers take the risk of getting behind the wheel after consuming alcohol due to failing to properly evaluate their driving ability Comments Related Articles Kaunas municipality begins refurbishment work on Jewish cemetary Lithuania supports Georgia s NATO aspirations NATO to halve Baltic air policing mission four jets to remain in Siaulai Subscribe Advertise Log In Please enter your username and password Forgot your password Login Related Articles Mixed hopes in Vilnius for Belarus reset Lithuanian MEP migrant crisis will be a lingering issue Refugees to be questioned on religion and previous military activities by Lithuanian authorities Former KGB spy given Lithuanian residence permit Subscribe A subscription to The Baltic Times is a cost effective way of staying in touch with the latest Baltic news and views enabling you full access from anywhere with an Internet connection Subscribe Now About The Baltic Times The Baltic Times is an independent monthly newspaper that covers latest political economic business and cultural events in Estonia Latvia and Lithuania Born of a merger between The Baltic Independent and The Baltic Observer in 1996 The Baltic Times continues to bring objective comprehensive and timely information to those with an interest in this rapidly developing area of the Baltic Sea region Read more Our news analysis and

    Original URL path: http://www.baltictimes.com/lithuanian_interior_ministers_calls_for_zero-tolerance_drink_driving/ (2016-02-13)
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  • Vilnius to hold Baltic Pride 2016
    encourages the concept of entry into a marriage and creation of a family other than stipulated in the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania and the Civil Code of the Republic of Lithuania Between June 13 19 other socio cultural events are planned around the Baltic Pride march The LGL thanked Vilnius Municipality for its smooth and constructive cooperation We are glad that the idea of an open capital is coming into reality said LGL head Vladimir Simonko The Lithuanian Gay League is ready give the Baltic Pride 2016 festival to the city and we will make every effort for this event to be interesting and beneficial for members of our community and also all residents and guest of Vilnius In 2013 the Vilnius authorities refused to allow an LGBT march in Gediminas Avenue and suggested holding it in Upes Street which is located outside of the city center A court later ruled that such a restriction was unfounded Around 500 LGBT persons and supporters marched through Gediminas Avenue A similar number of people also came to protest against the march The first Baltic Pride in Upes Street in Vilnius took place in 2010 At the time the local authorities did not want to allow the march to take place but a court later overruled the decision Comments Related Articles Kaunas municipality begins refurbishment work on Jewish cemetary Lithuania supports Georgia s NATO aspirations NATO to halve Baltic air policing mission four jets to remain in Siaulai Subscribe Advertise Log In Please enter your username and password Forgot your password Login Related Articles Mixed hopes in Vilnius for Belarus reset Lithuanian MEP migrant crisis will be a lingering issue Refugees to be questioned on religion and previous military activities by Lithuanian authorities Former KGB spy given Lithuanian residence permit Subscribe

    Original URL path: http://www.baltictimes.com/vilnius_to_hold_baltic_pride_2016/ (2016-02-13)
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  • Time to talk
    not a day that goes by that Europe s future could be changed in an instant What then is the average citizen to make The article you requested can be accessed only by subscribing to the online version of The Baltic Times If you are already subscribed to The Baltic Times please authorize yourself Log In In case you don t have a subscription yet please visit our SUBSCRIPTION section Comments Related Articles Rhetoric at the Riga Conference what we talk about when we talk about war with Russia What refugees are running from What changes lie in store for Poland Subscribe Advertise Log In Please enter your username and password Forgot your password Login Related Articles The phantom of separatism in Latgale EDITORIAL The Baltic Security Question Baltics 2015 The long march to Paris Subscribe A subscription to The Baltic Times is a cost effective way of staying in touch with the latest Baltic news and views enabling you full access from anywhere with an Internet connection Subscribe Now About The Baltic Times The Baltic Times is an independent monthly newspaper that covers latest political economic business and cultural events in Estonia Latvia and Lithuania Born of a merger

    Original URL path: http://www.baltictimes.com/time_to_talk/ (2016-02-13)
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  • A letter from Vilnius to Belarus
    it s the same That s why Lukashenko is laughing when he says We don t need an opposition like this On one hand you exist on the other hand you don t Formally the opposition exists and sometimes they find themselves behind bars But as soon as they are out they start fighting each other The opposition has no influence and people see this Therefore the opposition is not trusted The time has come to openly say The emperor has no clothes and the emperor is not only Lukashenko but a fractured opposition It is well known who Lukashenko is and what he is doing but who and where is the opposition and what are their interests Though Belarus doesn t have the influence of either a rook or knight on the world s chessboard it recently has assumed a significantly advanced and important position While it will not win the game Lukashenko s ability to change color now black now white gives it the potential to influence the course of play in important ways One must recall that following Perestroika and the subsequent collapse of the Soviet Union Belarus was identified as one of the most promising countries in the post Soviet space Expectations for democratic transformation were high It was within this context that U S President Bill Clinton arrived in Minsk in 1993 sharing his hopes aspirations and beliefs for Belarus bright future Since that time and during the period leading up to the present presidential election myriad seminars and conferences have been conducted for academic and international professionals Foreign ministry and diplomatic representatives from numerous Western nations have made dozens of study tours seeing firsthand the activities in Belarus It must be asked to what purpose In the preceding years Western investment has been significant Official statistics indicate that between 2006 and 2012 approximately 875 million USD was spent to assist Belarus most of which was directed in support of the development of civil society Most recently financial assistance has continued in support of cooperation with Belarus though at a much lower level Again we ask to what purpose What has resulted from this investment and optimism and how effective has the opposition which has received such extraordinary financial and moral support been Sadly the results have been very disappointing Civil society remains divided receiving little organized leadership from the opposition Further the intellectual life of Belarus has remained notably stagnant making the contributions of such persons as Aleksievich all the more exceptional And one can only ask Where are the voices of Belarusian students and how have they been silenced It is no small irony for the peoples of Belarus as well as an embarrassment for the European Bologna Process that in the very year that Belarus is admitted into the Bologna Process with its clear requirements for an open free and unfettered educational environment Lukashenko s decision to maintain his personal exile of Belarus only democratic university goes unchallenged There is even greater

    Original URL path: http://www.baltictimes.com/a_letter_from_vilnius_to_belarus/ (2016-02-13)
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  • On dupes, vandals, and charlatans
    wind They could have insisted the photo exhibition should be housed indoors as a condition for their support where it would be easier to secure rather than in a public space where a risk of international embarrassment ran high and where it could be a sitting target for vandals keen to make a quick easy and destructive political point This was all the more important because the Ministry was dependent on Melnikoff and his fellow event organizers to guarantee the exhibition s security Riga s laws state the organiser is obliged to provide their own security services for these events If the event was not placed inside the Ministry should have doubled its efforts to check if Melnikoff was a reliable associate and not the fraudster he turned out to be By the Foreign Ministry s logo being on the exhibition their own reputation intertwined with the assumed respectability of Melnikoff a Ukrainian born photographer with US citizenship Trusting him turned out to be woefully naive The Ministry left itself open to abuse from a charlatan masquerading as someone world famous Melnikoff abused this trust spectacularly letting Riga and the Ministry down in a variety of ways His organisation s security failed to stop the vandals even after the first vandalising offense They let it happen a second time on their watch despite assurances to Riga s police that they could handle the security situation This would be bad enough But the Ministry failed to check out Melnikoff s work itself before letting him plaster their logo on his website and on the public exhibition Where was the resident art critic at the Ministry Why was this work not emailed to a photographer to check if these photos were legitimate Even just running it through Google images would have done the trick If they had they would have found out that Melnikoff was anything but world famous They would have discovered Melnikoff had used crude plagiarisms some simply nabbed from the website Shutter Stock others pinched from AP photographers He was asking for donations to an organisation based in Florida whose funding model looked ostensibly sketchy This was all available information in the public domain Why was this not looked over Or if it was checked out why was this not a cause for alarm at the Ministry Even a quick perusal of his website shows a lack of professionalism that should have raised eyebrows How about Melnikoff s claimed connections to Buckingham Palace To Hollywood To the Dalai Lama It would not have required employing Sherlock Holmes to look into some of these dubious claims A call to the British Embassy probably could have got to the bottom of his apparent friendship with Queen Elizabeth II It raises the question had anyone at the Ministry even met Melnikoff before they allowed him to put on the exhibition using their logo A quick Google search shows a man dogged by controversy and dubious business practices from Florida to Kyrgyzstan His

    Original URL path: http://www.baltictimes.com/on_dupes__vandals__and_charlatans/ (2016-02-13)
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  • The Fire Forging Europe
    cities are now home to more refugees than original inhabitants and more Syrian refugees are living in Istanbul than in all the EU countries combined As a matter of statistics the EU can clearly accommodate a million or more refugees This would amount to just 0 2 of the EU s total population far less than the number of people that member countries will need to admit in the coming decades to replenish their aging workforces But that doesn t mean it will be easy Demographic data don t capture the on the ground reality of asylum systems on the brink of collapse or economies struggling to provide housing and employment The biggest challenge for many EU leaders will be managing the domestic political reaction as xenophobic and nationalist forces seek to stoke and capitalize on anti immigrant sentiment Indeed at the EU level the divisions and debates among national governments came to the fore as leaders struggled to reach an agreement on a quota system for the distribution of refugees among member states In the end the decision on the quota system was settled by majority vote rather than the usual and much preferred rule of consensus though the majority was large with only four of 28 countries opposed Until this latest crisis the discussion about the EU was dominated by talk of a divide between northern creditors and southern debtors Today the hot topic is the division between western countries that welcome the refugees and eastern countries that want nothing to do with them But despite all the disagreements and tensions the real story may be that there is near unanimous agreement that the solution must be European everybody agrees that the challenges posed by the new world disorder are best faced together Indeed some of the ideas proposed a common asylum system and a common burden sharing scheme would constitute a clear transfer of sovereignty to the EU in an area once seen as a core national function Judging from opinion polls the European public has come to see the EU s handling of the euro crisis as a success Confidence in the EU has increased from 48 to 58 during the last three years after a period of steady decline skepticism about the European project dropped from 46 to 36 The pattern is starting to look familiar a new crisis a new meeting in Brussels an initially muddled response debates and divisions and then gradual step by step progress toward a common response driven by the realization that there is no other alternative In today s disagreements lie the roots of a stronger union The public no longer thinks of the European project as some utopian endeavor an abstract attempt to forge an ever closer union Increasingly the EU is coming to be seen as a practical and absolutely essential mechanism for a group of small countries to work together to meet their common challenges The people of the EU are indeed waking up to a

    Original URL path: http://www.baltictimes.com/the_fire_forging_europe/ (2016-02-13)
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