In 2016 the three Baltic States – Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia – celebrate the 25th Anniversary of the restoration of independence and the re-establishment of regular, multifaceted Baltic-Nordic cooperation ties. A quarter of a century is an important milestone calling for reflection and evaluation: How far has the cooperation advanced? What is its track record? What achievements has it yielded? And, perhaps most pertinent of all, where do we want to go from here and how do we envisage our next 25 years together?
To ponder and discuss issues such as these, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Latvia and the Nordic Council of Ministers´ Office in Latvia will organize a high-level roundtable “1991-2016 and the Way Ahead” on 22 August, at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Latvia.
The roundtable will consist of distinguished politicians with a solid commitment to Nordic-Baltic cooperation: H.E. Mr. Edgars Rinkēvičs, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Latvia; Mr. Petras Auštrevičius, Member of the European Parliament, Lithuania; Mr. Carl Bildt, former Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of Sweden; Mr. Uffe Ellemann-Jensen, former Minister of Foreign Affairs of Denmark; Mr. Jón Baldvin Hannibalsson, former Minister of Foreign Affairs of Iceland; Mr. Dagfinn Høybråten, Secretary General of the Nordic Council of Ministers; Mr. Jüri Luik, Director of the International Centre of Defence and Security, former Minister of Foreign Affairs and Defence of Estonia; Mr. Kimmo Sasi, former Minister of European Affairs and Foreign Trade of Finland; Mr. Michael Tetzschner, Member of Parliament of Norway.
The Roundtable will be moderated by the Associate Professor of Comparative Politics at the University of Latvia, Dr Daunis Auers, who has written and commented extensively on Baltic and Baltic-Nordic relations and is the author of “Comparative Politics and Government of the Baltic States: Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania in the 21st Century” (2015).
Following an initial round of remarks and exchange of opinions by the Roundtable panel, the moderator will encourage interventions and queries also from the invited guests, while the general public will be able to follow the discussion online via live streaming.
The Roundtable will be followed by the screening of “Those Who Dare”, a documentary about the crucial role of Nordic allies in the lead-up to Baltic independence. Introductory remarks will be given by the film’s screenwriter Ms Kolfinna Baldvinsdóttir. The screening will take place at the Press Centre Hall of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The day will be rounded off with a joint reception, organized by the Nordic embassies to Latvia and the Nordic Council of Ministers’ Office in Latvia. The reception will take place at 17:00 at the Latvian National Museum of Art.