The former French President Nicolas Sarkozy should have kept silent about the need to lift the sanctions between Russia and the European Union, said the Foreign Minister of Lithuania Linas Linkevičius on June 16.
“Déjà entendu: a good opportunity was lost to keep silent...”, wrote the Lithuanian Foreign Minister on his Twitter page. Linkevičius linked his post with news about Sarkozy’s call for lifting the sanctions. Linkevičius compared Nicolas Sarkozy’s remark with the rhetoric of his predecessor Jacques Chirac concerning the Eastern Europe.
Earlier Sarkozy, while on a trip to the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF), called Russia and Europe to lift the sanctions.
According to the former French leader’s opinion, Russia “as a stronger party should be the first to extend the hand to Europe and lift the sanctions.”
Linas Linkevičius had previously voiced Lithuania’s disappointment with the decision of another European politician, the European Commission head Jean-Claude Juncker, to visit the SPIEF. “The Kremlin uses meetings to create the impression of business as usual, and usually reports this impression to their own public”, said Linkevičius.
But the European Commissioner for Health and Food Safety Vytenis Andriukaitis criticized the Lithuanian Foreign Minister’s statements, noting that “a Foreign Minister should have a broader worldview and understand why visits, contacts and discussions are necessary in foreign policy.”