Linas Linkevičius: It’s Time to Concentrate for the Benefit of EU Citizens

30 Jun 2013, Last updated at, 22:50 EEST
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As Lithuania takes over the Presidency of the Council of the European Union from Ireland on 1 July, Linas Linkevičius, Minister of Foreign Affairs, has urged all Member States to work in concert for the benefit of EU citizens, and to foster the EU values that form the basis for a shared European future.

“This year is the European Year of Citizens as well as the 20th anniversary of EU citizenship. I invite you to concentrate on efforts to ensure the well-being of all EU citizens. I hope that as the Lithuanian Presidency of the Council of the EU comes to an end, I will be able to say that this was a successful year for EU citizens. It is for their benefit that our Presidency will seek to accomplish a reliable, growing and open Europe,” he stated.

The Minister of Foreign Affairs has welcomed Lithuania, the first Presidency of the Council of the EU from the Baltic States, and has stressed that this is a duty for every EU Member State. According to Mr Linkevičius, “We shall seek to be reliable partners and mediators, and shall continue the work started during the Irish Presidency and move forward based on the same experience.”

The Minister of Foreign Affairs has also welcomed Croatia that has joined the EU today, 1 July.

“Our Presidency is opening in a larger family, thus making us stronger. The new Member State is an example that we must always keep in mind the key EU visions, i.e. cooperation in reaching out to our partners and neighbours, and facilitating the expansion process. This matters, as only an open EU can defend its values and make them universal and accessible,” he concluded.
 

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