C O N F I D E N T I A L VILNIUS 000626
E.O. 12958: DECL: 09/03/2017
TAGS: EUN PGOV PREL YI RS CH IN LH
SUBJECT: LITHUANIA WILL FOCUS ON RUSSIA ISSUES AT GYMNICH
REF: STATE 123576
Classified By: CHARGE DAMIAN LEADER FOR REASONS 1.4 (B) AND (D)
Â¶1. (C) Summary. Lithuania plans to focus on Russia for the
September 7 GYMNICH meeting. FM Vaitiekunas will argue that
problems of individual EU member states with Russia should be
approached as collective EU problems. He will also seek to
take the agenda focus off of a Partnership and Cooperation
Agreement (PCA) with Russia and reevaluate the Russia-EU
relationship. Vaitiekunas may also speak about Kosovo.
Lithuania remains prepared to recognize Kosovo if
independence is declared but some other members are not
ready. End Summary.
Â¶2. (C) We delivered reftel points to Egidijus Navikas, Head
of the MFA's Common Foreign and Security Policy Division on
September 4. Navikas told us that FM Vaitiekunas will not
speak on Iran, China, India, or the Middle East. He will
follow the discussions with interest, but would like to speak
about Russia. Vaitiekunas will assert that problems such as
the Polish meat issue should be treated as EU-Russia issues,
not as individual member state issues. He may mention the
handling of the investigation in Kaliningrad into the death
of a Lithuanian businessman as an example of Russia's desire
to treat these issues as individual member state problems.
Â¶3. (C) Navikas said that Vaitiekunas will try to take the
focus off of a PCA agreement with Russia and stress that the
EU should not accept an asymmetrical partnership.
Vaitiekunas will try to redirect attention towards energy
planning and consolidation and conflict resolution before the
Russia-EU Summit in October. Navikas told us that
Vaitiekunas will not present a miracle solution, but he will
propose a pragmatic alternative to continuing PCA
negotiations with no Russian change in position.
Â¶4. (C) Navikas said Vaitiekunas may or may not speak on
Kosovo. He assured us that the GOL is prepared to recognize
Kosovo following a declaration of independence, but he
thought that Spain, Greece, and Slovakia are not ready for
that step. Navikas told us he thinks the GYMNICH may be used
to explore a common EU position on Kosovo and that the
European Security and Defense Policy (ESDP) mission will get
worked out one way or another. Navikas said that the basis
for the ESDP mission could perhaps be an invitation from the
government of an independent Kosovo. Navikas thanked the USG
for reftel information and offered to meet after the GYMNICH
if we have any questions.