Permanent Representative of Lithuania to the International Organizations in Vienna presented his letter of credence to the Director-General/ Executive Director of the United Nations Office at Vienna/ United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime
On September 13, Permanent Representative of Lithuania to the International Organizations in Vienna, Ambassador Mr Vaidotas Verba, presented his letter of credence to the Director-General/ Executive Director of the United Nations Office at Vienna (UNOV)/ United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) Ms Ghada Fathi Waly.
During the meeting, Ambassador Vaidotas Verba and the UNODC Executive Director exchanged their views on questions, put high on the UNODC agenda such as Lithuania's role in the fight against organized crime, drug trafficking, illegal migration and Lithuania's contribution to the fight against corruption. Ambassador Verba mentioned that Lithuania is facing a new problem - illegal migration flows from Asia, the Middle East and Africa through neighboring Belarus. Ms. Waly asked about the scale of this illegal migration. The Lithuanian representative took an interest in the role of UNODC in Afghanistan, where such an unexpected and sudden change of government could affect the growth of crime not only in the region, but also in Europe, including new drug trafficking flows and illegal migration. Ms. Waly agreed that the situation in Afghanistan was very worrying and that she did expect anything positive in the near future. She mentioned not only the possible new flows of migrants and the illicit trade in arms and drugs, but also the new threats of terrorism.
Ms. Waly informed that UNODC had prepared a new strategy for 2021-2025, as well as strategies for Africa and Latin America, where she would like to see Lithuania playing a more active role. The Director of UNODC mentioned the review mechanism of the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime (UNTOC) and the progress made. Lithuania this year together with the DRC will have to conduct a review of Uganda. Lithuania will be reviewed by PAR together with Ukraine. She welcomed Lithuania's contribution to the fight against the illicit trafficking in firearms. Ambassador V. Verba assured that Lithuania will continue to seek close cooperation with the UNODC.
On 12 July, the Permanent Representative of Lithuania Ambassador Andrius Krivas sent letters to the UN High Commissioner for Refugees Mr. Filippo Grandi and the Director General of the International Organization for Migration Mr. António Vitorino in which he provided detailed information on the increased flow of third-country irregular migrants from Belarus to Lithuania and asked respective organizations to react in accordance with their mandates.
On 18 February, a virtual side-event on the human rights violations in Belarus took place in the run-up to the 46th session of the Human Rights Council. The event aimed to discuss the ongoing human rights violations in Belarus and possible ways of how the international community, and the UN Human Rights Council in particular, could contribute to ensuring the accountability for those violations.