Lithuania loses economically without good ties with neighbors, says presidential candidate

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VILNIUS, April 16. /TASS/. Lithuania is losing economically without normal relationship with its eastern neighbors, a MEP and a candidate for the Lithuanian presidency, Valdemar Tomasevski, told ELTA news agency on Tuesday.

“Due to the absence of good relations with our eastern neighbors we are losing a lot economically,” said Tomasevski, the leader of the parliamentary political party Electoral Action of Poles in Lithuania – Christian Families Alliance.

If elected as Lithuania’s president in the May election, he would first of all head to Minsk, he said. “Cooperation with Belarus could be lucrative for Lithuania, for example in terms of a transit of Belarusian cargoes via the Klaipeda port, which we may lose if we continue adhering to warlike rhetoric,” the politician said.

He stressed the necessity of good relations with all neighbors, which one can’t choose. “The president should also visit Poland, Latvia and Russia,” Tomasevski said.

He said Vilnius didn’t pursue foreign policy of its own at the moment. “Lithuania is pursuing not its own policy, but the policy of other countries of the European Union, I mean the tandem of France and Germany,” the presidential candidate claimed.

“I believe the well-being of the citizens must be the main goal,” he said, citing as an example Germany that is cooperating with all countries for the sake of its own interests, including cooperation with Russia on Nord Stream 1 and Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline projects.

Tomasevski is the only representative of a national minority in the presidential race. The presidential election in Lithuania is due in May 2019. The president is elected for the term of five years. Incumbent President Dalia Grybauskaite is serving her second term in office and cannot be elected for a third term.

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