Baltic Prime Ministers meet, agree

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The Prime Ministers of the three Baltic states, Latvia, Estonia and Lithuania met in Rīga Friday for informal talks which as expected produced unanimity and nothing in the way of surprises. 

For new Latvian premier Māris Kučinskis it was a chance to get properly acquainted with his northern and southern counterparts.

Speaking to journalists shortly after their brief talks, the trio expressed similar views on topics including security, the refugee crisis and energy diversification hopes for the region.

On 'border issues'  - by which he appeared to mean Russia without mentioning it by name - Kučinskis said: "The threat is still there, the threat has not diminished. Therefore it is very important for us to continue cooperation with NATO... we highly welcome the continued presence of NATO forces here in Latvia."

Estonian PM Taavi Roivas looked forward to the forthcoming NATO summit in Warsaw, saying:

"The most important common goal is preparation for the Warsaw summit... Now with Warsaw [summit] we have to take things to the next level … we need to both enlarge and make more permanent the presence of our allies in our region."

All three leaders said they were ready to fulfill their obligations regarding refugee quotas.

Lithuania's Algirdas Butkevicius expressed concern at Belarus' plans to build a nuclear power plant close to the Lithuanian border and called for support from other EU nations to ensure the project was completed according to the highest international standards.

"It is a concern. It is near the external border of the EU so we think it is a threat not only for Lithuania but for the whole of the EU. We must make sure that this nuclear power plant in Belarus complies fully with international environmental and nuclear safety standards [and we] look forward to the support of EU states to ensure this."

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