Kariņš tells EU leaders Latvia will maintain its Euro-Atlantic course

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Latvian Prime Minister Krišjānis Kariņš was in Brussels this week, where he had meetings with European Council President Donald Tusk, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker and the EU's chief Brext negotiator Michel Barnier, where he confirmed to them that Latvia will maintain its Euro-Atlantic course.

The State Chancellery said that in these introductory meetings, Kariņš told the EU officials about the new Latvian government's priorities, and discussed current issues on the EU agenda, including Brexit and the bloc's next multi-annual budget.

During his meetings with EU officials, Kariņš said that the new Latvian government will maintain Latvia's Euro-Atlantic course, and support a strong and unified EU based on equal treatment.

During a meeting with Tusk, the two sides discuss the EU's strategic agenda between 2019 and 2024, and emphasized the necessity to strengthen the EU's common market. Kariņš also emphasized the EU's important role in security and defense. A the same time, both sides also discussed EU relations with Russia and the trans-Atlantic agenda.

During a meeting with Juncker, the prime minister discussed matters related to the EU's multi-annual budget. Kariņš said that Latvia will continue to defend its interests in regards to cohesion financing and the common agricultural policy. ''A balance must be found in the next budget between so-called new priorities and traditional ones,'' Kariņš said.

Meanwhile, during a meeting with Barnier, the two sides discussed the possible Brexit scenarios and the possible development of events. ''We truly hope that an exit deal will be negotiated with Great Britain, but we are preparing for every scenario,'' Karins said.

The Latvian prime minister expressed his support for Barnier and emphasized the importance of EU unity in the talks with Great Britain. Karins also expressed hope that the EU will maintain close relations with Great Britain after Brexit.

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