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Prime Minister: Lithuania appreciates support of EU institutions and member states in combating the hybrid attack

Date

2021 09 24

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Prime Minister Ingrida Šimonytė has met with Vice-President of the European Parliament Roberta Metsola and has discussed measures to combat the hybrid attack by Belarus against the EU, challenges posed by irregular migration used by authoritarian regimes, the European Green Deal, and other policy matters.

‘This year, Lithuania has faced an extraordinary challenge: Lukashenko’s hybrid attack on the entire EU at the EU’s border. This attack has highlighted the gaps in the existing EU legal framework related to the insufficient protection of the EU’s external border and the possibility of abuse of the EU’s asylum system,’ has emphasised the Prime Minister.

According to Šimonytė, it is obvious that measures applied at the national level are not sufficient in similar situations; therefore, the EU should have safeguards that would allow member states to respond quickly to similar challenges and protect their national security. Safeguards should ensure the protection of the EU’s external borders, and prevent irregular migration and exploitation of EU’s asylum policy by undemocratic regimes.

The Head of Government has emphasised that Lithuania highly values the support and solidarity of the EU institutions and member states, and hopes that jointly, the best ways and means will be found to respond to similar hybrid attacks.

‘The support and assistance of the closest partners has contributed to managing the migration crisis on the Belarus-Lithuania border. Joint efforts have helped stabilise the situation, but the situation remains tense, and the hybrid attack itself continues. Therefore, we have strengthened border controls, have requested assistance from the European Commission and three EU agencies, and have activated the EU Civil Protection Mechanism,’ has noted the Prime Minister.