President Rinkēvičs goes on first foreign visit

On Monday, July 10, the President of Latvia Edgars Rinkēvičs traveled on his first foreign visit. According to tradition, the Estonian capital, Tallinn, is chosen as the first destination, Latvian Television reported.

Rinkēvičs met with both the President of Estonia, the Prime Minister and Speaker of Parliament, as well as the Minister for Foreign Affairs. Following a meeting with President Alar Karis, both stressed their unity on issues such as the need to move forward with the Rail Baltica railway project, as well as the desynchronization of electricity networks from the so-called BRELL network in 2025. They also discussed the united position of the countries at the forthcoming NATO summit in Vilnius.

Both countries agree that NATO countries should continue to provide support to Ukraine, and member states should gradually increase their defense budget.

They also talked about relations between Latvia-Estonia, particularly highlighting the tradition that Latvia's presidents choose Estonia for their first foreign visit.

"Our shared history – we were once Livonia. The territories of Latvia and Estonia were part of such cultural and historical space.

"Secondly, I think we also have quite a lot of such very practical, close cooperation. For example, in our talks with the President today, we talked about practical issues of cooperation between Valka-Valga. In fact, we have one city, or two cities, which is actually one, at a purely geographical level. It may impose some sense of responsibility, however, to look at how we can support our citizens in Valka, how the Estonian Government can support the people of Valga. Of course, too, you know, tradition has importance," Rinkēvičs said.


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