UK’s Johnson disappointed by China’s treatment of Lithuania

LONDON: British Prime Minister Boris Johnson expressed disappointment on Tuesday (Feb 8) with what he cast as China's coercive trading practices against Lithuania.

China has downgraded diplomatic ties with Lithuania and pressured multinationals to sever links with the Baltic state after it allowed Taiwan to open a de-facto embassy in Vilnius.

"The prime minister reiterated the UK's disappointment in China's use of coercive trading practices against Lithuania," a Downing Street spokesman said after talks between Johnson and Lithuanian Prime Minister Ingrida Simonyte.

On Ukraine, Britain and Lithuania cautioned that a Russian invasion would be a big mistake.

"They agreed that any invasion by Russia into Ukraine would be a disastrous mistake, and that it was important to continue providing practical economic and defence support to Ukraine," the spokesman said.

Simonyte said that due to a buildup of Russian forces in Belarus, Lithuania needed an increase of NATO forces.

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It wants sequential strengthening of air defense and rapid reaction forces, the supply of additional ammunition and regular military exercises of allies in the Baltics, her office said.

Artmotion Asia

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