Lithuanian president Dalia Grybauskaite has been criticised by her predecessor, Valdas Adamkus, for her comments on the upcoming presidential elections in Belarus.
Earlier this month it was reported that a Lithuanian diplomate quoted Mrs Grybauskaite saying that she supported Belarusian president Lukashenko. According to her, Mr Lukashenko – who has been ruling Belarus since 1994 in a manner that is frequently characterised as totalitarian – would be a guarantor of stability for the neighbouring countries and limit Moscow’s influence on the country. The opposition on the other hand would be too fragmented and conflict-ridden to make Belarus a stable partner for the EU. This initially unconfirmed statement had already triggered a wave of criticism by several politicians and European human rights groups.
Former president Adamkus now declared that he considered any attempt to cooperate with the totalitarian Belarus for the mere sake of stability as unacceptable. He had initially responded to these reports by characterising Belarus as a dictatorship and a controversial comparison of president Lukashenko with Adolf Hitler.