Lithuanian FM stresses importance of Egypt hosting Arab-European summit next month

MENA , Thursday 24 Jan 2019

Lithuanian FM
Lithuanian FM (photo:

During a visit to Cairo, Lithuanian Foreign Minister Linas Linkevičius underlined the importance of Egypt hosting the Arab League-European Union summit by the end of February.

The summit will take place in the Egyptian Red Sea city of Sharm El-Sheikh.

Speaking to MENA before leaving Cairo on Thursday, Linkevičius said that the Arab world plays an important global role and that the EU is providing assistance to the Arab region.

The minister expressed hopes that the summit will come up with positive results.

As for the outcome of his Cairo visit, Linkevičius said that he agreed with Egypt that the country will send a delegation in autumn to Vilnius to hold a meeting of the Egyptian-Lithuanian trade, economic and scientific higher committee.

Linkevičius said that his talks with Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry covered backing the two countries' candidates in international organisations and enhancing bilateral cooperation in communication, information technology and financial services, especially as Lithuania is known for its high-speed internet service.

Around 40,000 Lithuanian tourists visit Egypt annually, and there is a high possibility that their numbers could rise with the increase in flights between the two countries.

Linkevičius also talked about the possibility of signing a legal assistance agreement on criminal cases, an agreement in the field of e-services and a memorandum of understanding in the agricultural domain.

He also expressed hopes of stepping up cooperation with Egypt in education, highlighting that there are 40 Egyptian students studying at Lithuanian universities.

The minister also invited Egypt to participate in "Arab Culture Days," which will take place in Vilnius in the fall. The event is dedicated to Arab theatre, he said, noting that last year's activities were dedicated to the Arabic Language.

Linkevičius said that a small Lithuanian-to-Arabic dictionary has been issued and gifted a copy to Shoukry.

As for Syria, he said the situation is still very fragile and one of the main reasons behind the instability in the Middle East, adding that he hopes the Arab League-EU summit will come up with an agreement on how to handle the situation in the country.

The minister underlined the importance of finding radical solutions to the Syrian crisis.

As for the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, he said his country is committed to the two-state solution and that it will not transfer its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

The minister said that Lithuania is trying to help push forward dialogue between the two sides given its good relations with both, adding that Egypt can also play an important role in this regard in light of its relations with both the Palestinians and Israelis

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