On June 12, MLI was honoured to host Mr. Egidijus Meilūnas, Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania, in a dialogue on the challenges and opportunities facing NATO-member countries in the lead up to the NATO summit in Vilnius. The dialogue was moderated by Senior Fellow Balkan Devlen and was hosted in collaboration with the Embassy of Lithuania in Canada.
Among those in attendance were Inga Miškinytė, Deputy Head of Mission at the Embassy of Lithuania; H.E. Kaspars Ozolins, Ambassador of Latvia; Krzysztof Lewandowski, Deputy Head of Mission at the Embassy of Poland; Andrii Bukvych, Deputy Head of Mission at the Embassy of Ukraine; MP Ali Ehsassi, Chair of the House Foreign Affairs Committee; MLI Senior Fellows, representatives from DND, civil society, think-tanks, political staffers for Member of Parliament, and private sector.
During the dialogue, Mr. Egidijus Meilūnas explained the need for increased coordination among NATO-member countries to counter the threat of Russian aggression with emphasis on reinforcing allies in the Baltic region. Whereas it is agreed that Canada has made a substantial contribution to Ukraine in its struggle, it was also agreed that more can and should be done to meet Canada’s NATO funding commitments.
Beyond trans-atlantic policy, participants also discussed security concerns in the Indo-Pacific – with tensions having recently increased following provocative actions by Chinese vessels in the Taiwan Strait. Emphasis was put on finding new ways to circumvent the rising Moscow-Beijing axis by establishing and strenghtening trade with other countries in the region.