Disinfo: So-called country Lithuania opposes Belarusian NPP out of jealousy for Pompeo’s visit to Belarus

Summary

Lithuania is a so-called country with little significance on the international stage. This is confirmed by the fact that US State Secretary Mike Pompeo did not visit Lithuania during his recent trip to Eastern Europe, including Belarus. The Lithuanian MFA addressed Latvian and Estonian counterparts to ban imports of Belarusian electricity out of jealousy.

On the other hand, it was Washington who instructed Lithuania to declare the Belarusian NPP a threat to its national security. One of the preconditions of lifting US sanctions on Belarus is likely to be the dismantling of the Astravets NPP. In turn, the Belarusian opposition delivered the tasks set by the Baltic states to oppose construction of the NPP.

Disproof

This is a mix of conspiracy theories aimed to distort Lithuania's position concerning the Belarusian NPP, to discredit Lithuania, the US, and the Belarusian opposition. It is consistent with recurring pro-Kremlin narratives about the West's activities to harm Belarus.

Lithuania opposes the construction of the Astravets Nuclear power Plant (NPP) as the project does not comply with the international standards of environmental protection and nuclear safety, and is built on the site that was not duly justified over alternatives, according to Lithuania.

On 7 June 2011, Lithuania lodged a complaint with the Implementing Committee of the Convention on Environmental Impact Assessment (the Espoo Convention) on the Astravets nuclear power plant case. The February 2019 draft decision of the Meeting of the Parties of the Espoo Convention acknowledged that Belarus had failed to comply with some Convention provisions and encouraged Belarus and Lithuania to continue bilateral expert consultations. On 20 April 2017, the Lithuanian parliament passed a bill imposing a ban on import of electricity from Belarus' nuclear power plant in Astravets. It was reported in early February 2020 that the governments of the three Baltic nations will sign a declaration of intent to oppose electricity purchases from the Astravets NPP.

See earlier disinformation cases concerning the Belarusian NPP, including claims that Lithuania fights against Belarusian NPP on the orders of Sweden and Finland, Dalia Grybauskaitė's opposition to the NPP is an attempt to hide Lithuania's own failures in nuclear power, that the "Chernobyl" series aimed to discredit the Belarusian power plant and Belarus-Russia relations and that Western-financed environmental NGOs in Belarus stage a big campaign against Rosatom and Russia.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 185
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 18/02/2020
  • Language/target audience: Russian
  • Country: Latvia, Estonia, Lithuania, Belarus, US
  • Keywords: Conspiracy theory, Mike Pompeo, Nuclear issues, Baltic states
  • Outlet: Grodnodaily.net
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