“Before the Vilnius summit, it can be said that the alliance is stronger than ever,” Kariņš said. He pointed to Finland’s accession to NATO and, hopefully, the soon admission of Sweden to the alliance. However, the strengthening of the alliance should be continued and the defense of the eastern flank should be strengthened, according to Kariņš.
Kariņš emphasized that Latvia’s aid to Ukraine, including humanitarian aid, exceeds 1% of GDP.
During the meeting, Kariņš and Stoltenberg discussed preparations for the NATO summit in Vilnius, which will take place on July 11 and 12 this year.
During the visit, Kariņš also met with the Chairman of the European Parliament, Roberta Metsola. During the meeting, topics such as the European Union’s (EU) future support for Ukraine, including the start of EU accession negotiations with Ukraine, and holding Russia accountable for war crimes committed in Ukraine were discussed.
Kariņš expressed that it would be desirable to open EU accession negotiations with Ukraine by the end of this year.
During the meeting with the President of the European Parliament, the Prime Minister also emphasized the need to hold Russia and its officials accountable for the war crimes committed in Ukraine. Also, K. Kariņš expressed the need to further strengthen the sanctions regime against Russia, where at the moment one of the most important elements is the need to eliminate attempts to circumvent the introduced sanctions at the EU level.
During the visit, Kariņš also met with the president of the European People’s Party (ETP) represented in the European Parliament, Manfred Vēbers, and ETP members. During the meeting, K. Kariņš discussed with ETP members the provision of further support to Ukraine, the threat of migration caused by Lukashenko’s regime and the implementation of the European Green Course.
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