2022.08.05 12:56

Following visits to Minsk and Moscow, Lithuanian political organisation comes under investigation

BNS 2022.08.05 12:56

On Friday, Lithuania's Prosecutor General's Office said it had launched a pre-trial investigation into The International Forum of Good Neighborhood, an association founded by Algirdas Paleckis, a controversial Lithuanian figure who is serving a prison term for spying for Russia.

They are under investigation for “aiding another state to act against Lithuania”, as provided by the Criminal Code's article.

Last week, four representatives of the association visited Moscow and met with members of the Civic Chamber of the Russian Federation. They then held a press conference, which was attended by Erika Švenčionienė, the head of the association, as well as Darius Norkus, a former head of the state-owned Vilnius Waters company, previously convicted for corruption.

Two more Lithuanian nationals, Edikas Jagelavičius and Mindaugas Ramoška, also took part in the press conference.

Read more: Lithuania’s pro-Kremlin disinformation network exposed – LRT Investigation

They claimed that the goal of their trip to Moscow was to break the alleged “information blockade” and to ask for a visa-free regime to Kaliningrad for Lithuanian citizens.

In addition, Švenčionienė questioned the legitimacy of the current Lithuanian government.

Previously, Švenčionienė and her associates visited Belarus and met with Alexander Lukashenko. There, she expressed her support for the Minsk regime.

Lithuania’s prosecutors first started collecting information about the association in mid July. Earlier this week, Lithuania's intelligence agency, the State Security Department (VSD), handed over its own information about the association, saying their activities constitute a threat to the country.