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Taiwan deputy foreign minister, envoy to US to attend Lithuanian freedom forum

Lithuania holds event to celebrate 100 years of diplomatic relations with US

(Facebook, U.S. Embassy in Vilnius photo)

(Facebook, U.S. Embassy in Vilnius photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Taiwan Deputy Foreign Minister Harry Tseng (曾厚仁) and Representative to the U.S. Hsiao Bi-khim (蕭美琴) will attend a forum held by the Lithuanian parliament, the Seimas, commemorating 100 years of Lithuania-U.S. relations on Thursday (July 7).

CNA reported that the forum’s theme will center around freedom. In addition to Tseng and Hsiao, Taiwan legislators Chiu Chih-wei (邱志偉) and Lin Ching-yi (林靜儀) will also attend.

The event will feature speakers including Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda, Prime Minister Ingrida Simonyte, parliament Speaker Viktorija Cmilyte-Nielsen; Ukrainian Parliament Chair Ruslan Stefanchuk, Foreign Affairs Committee Chair Oleksandr Merezhko; U.S. Department of State European and Eurasian Affairs Bureau Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary Dereck J. Hogan, Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chair Bob Menendez; Czech Senate Foreign Affairs Committee Chair Pavel Fischer; Polish Senate Foreign Affairs Committee Chair Bogdan Klich; Canadian Parliament Foreign Affairs Committee Chair Ali Ehsassi; former British Conservative Party Leader Iain Duncun Smith; Belarusian opposition Leader Svetlana Tikhanovskaya; former Georgian Education Minister and former Ukrainian National Police Chief Khatia Dekanoidze; as well as representatives from several countries’ think tank.

CNA cited the Seimas as saying on Friday (July 1) that Lithuania has been a steadfast leader in defending freedom, democracy, and human rights throughout its history. Since the country formed diplomatic ties with the U.S. in 1922, the two countries have contributed to international peace, prosperity, and freedom.

The Seimas added that with the current political situation, such a trans-Atlantic tie has become more important than ever. The purpose of holding a forum, therefore, is not only about deepening Lithuania-U.S. ties but also about reinforcing the international defense against authoritarianism.