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Weekly News from Lithuania, February 14


February 14, 2020            


Lithuania celebrates the State Restoration day this weekend. Each year the largest state flag flies from the TV tower in Vilnius             |              Credits @ LRT/E.Blaževič

Linas Linkevičius: France, a strategic partner in enhancing Lithuanian security

Minister of Foreign Affairs Linas Linkevičius had a meeting with French Minister of Foreign Affairs Jean-Yves le Drian in Paris. They discussed the key issues of bilateral cooperation, security, the European Union and NATO, and the European Neighbourhood.

The French Air Force conducted NATO air policing missions in the Baltic states for seven times already, five of which were in Lithuania. This year France is going to send the second mission of its servicemen who will join the NATO forward presence troops,” Mr Linkevičius said.


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The President: firm first steps made in negotiations on the funding of cohesion policy and direct payments for farmers

President Gitanas Nausėda met with Charles Michel, President of the European Council. During the working dinner the two leaders discussed the draft multiannual financial framework.

“Lithuania is prepared to contribute to the implementation of the EU strategic agenda by focusing on tackling climate change and development of innovation <...> ” the President said after the meeting.

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NATO Seen Favorably Across Member States

NATO is generally seen in a positive light across publics within the alliance, despite lingering tensions between the leaders of individual member countries. A median of 53% across 16 member countries surveyed have a favorable view of the organization, with only 27% expressing a negative view. But opinions of NATO and related issues vary widely across the countries surveyed, especially regarding the obligations of Article 5 of the 70-year-old Washington Treaty, which declares that an attack against one member nation is considered an attack against all members.

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Lithuanian Women in Tech             |              Credits @ Lithuanian Stories

British AI company Satalia expanding Lithuanian development and R&D operations


Satalia, the full-stack AI company, has announced plans to expand its operations in Kaunas, Lithuania. Over the next two years, the company intends to hire up to 50 new employees and expects its Kaunas office to grow as its core location for development and R&D projects.

“We reckon Lithuanians, especially those in the tech and academic communities, for their proven ambition to explore the AI and machine learning fields,” states Daniel Hulme, Satalia’s CEO.


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Challenges and opportunities for business process automation community in Lithuania


Almost all foreign capital business service centres in Lithuania empowers process automation as a part of their daily operations. However, there is a lack of a broader debate regarding the economic impact of robotization – according to the organizers of the IPA meetup conference organized in Lithuania for the second time. There are also few opportunities to share the experience and success stories in this field and a shortage of training programmes for the employees, all resulting in the race for talent.


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New opportunities to tackle air pollution – first Lithuanian mobile drone


Lithuania has come up with a breakthrough technology – PANDRONE – air pollution measurement system with the mobile drone.

Air pollution assessment system with identification sources for pollutants is still not on the market. So far, in Lithuania as well as in Europe, pollution has been measured in a stationary manner and theoretically reflects larger area data, but very often weather conditions and buildings reduce the accuracy and reliability of the data.

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Podcast Technotronika: How AI Expands Our Creativity


Technotronika maintains the second season with another podcast. This episode presents the most impressive function of Artificial Intelligence – Creativity. Can it help people to become more creative?

Kamilė Jokubaitė, the CEO of Attention Insight startup explains how AI is integrated into creative working processes. The AI-based startup allows marketing managers and media channels to see the design of their products from the viewpoint of consumers. Before AI, a similar analysis of consumers could take a couple of weeks. Now, a consumer can be analyzed in less than two minutes.

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Opening of Lithuanian Rock History Museum            |              Credits @ Šiandienos Istorija

Utena A. and M. Miškiniai Public Library Won Important Library Award


Utena A. & M. Miškiniai Public Library was awarded EIFL Public Library Innovation Award and received a prize of US $1,500 for offering children, parents and grandparents the opportunity to learn advanced digital skills together in family training sessions.

Vice-Minister of Culture Ingrida Veliutė congratulated the director of the library Vida Garunkštytė. According to the Vice-Minister, today libraries adaptto technological changes, resonate with the needs and expectations of society.


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International cultural events at the Vilnius Book Fair 2020


Every year the Vilnius Book Fair and its cultural programme is devoted to a special topic. The focus of the 21st International Vilnius book fair: “You should live without formulas, be open to the world.” Jonas Mekas. These words of a very well-known Lithuanian and world artist Jonas Mekas who used to declare freedom in his life and artwork.



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Stranger Things 4 ‘starts filming in Lithuania’ as we inch closer to learning the truth behind The American

Stranger Things fans can rejoice as season four has ‘begun filming in Lithuania’.

According to Netflix Life, the cast and crew have reportedly begun production in the Batlic region of Europe before returning to the US for more filming in early March. Considering season three ended with a scene in prison where an unknown American is being held, we are getting so much closer to finding out who it is.

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Let’s celebrate International Day of Happiness together

We are celebrating the International Day of Happiness for the third time in Kaunas city and its district.

People and businesses actively engaged in this day last year: 150 various organizations joined the celebration creating 250 events for those who find it harder to get involved in cultural events: museums, libraries, exhibitions, public objects. And those who gathered to spend this day together wouldn’t fit even into two Žalgiris arenas – 36 500 people joined the festival. This year the celebration will take place on the 20th of March. The main theme of this year’s festival is Happiness to get along.


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Republic of Užupis: The Micronation run by artists            |              Credits @ Culture Trip

February 16
Vilnius, the city of freedom, invites to the events of February the 16th

Vilnius invites to a spectacular and festive celebration of February 16, taking part in the march along the Road to Lithuanian Statehood, raising the flags of the three Baltic States together, meeting at the 30 symbolic bonfires, enjoying a festive concert, experiencing a unique sense of unity and enjoying the atmosphere of the city of freedom.

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February 13 - 16
Light Festival Klaipėda

The brightest event in the city sees Klaipėda bathed in lights for a few days in February. Hugely popular with locals and tourists alike, the festival also includes a number of tours and other events.

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February 14
Light on Syria

The event invites to get to know Syria, its culture and history before and after the war - what does it mean to lose one's history, one's homeland, even one's identity?


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KTU Researcher From India: Kaunas has Changed Immensely

For his doctoral studies, Tiwari chose KTU Ultrasound Research Institute for its internationally acclaimed state-of-the-art research. “Anywhere in the world you go, and I mean – anywhere – if you have skills you will definitely get the job,” says Dr Kumar Anubhav Tiwari, a researcher at Kaunas University of Technology Ultrasound Research
Institute. Although now the situation has changed significantly, in 2015, when Kumar came to study PhD, the state scholarship was smaller than his salary in India. However, he rose up to the challenge and has never regretted the decision.

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Highlight of the Week
Lithuania celebrates State Restoration Day, February 16

Photo credits @ Jurijus Azanovas / MFA

Feb 18 2020

Weekly News from Lithuania, January 24


January 24, 2020            


Credits @ Tomas Razmus

L. Linkevičius discusses situation in Sahel, ways to step up climate diplomacy in Brussels

On 20 January, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania Linas Linkevičius attended the Foreign Affairs Council in Brussels, which focused on the situation in Sahel and climate diplomacy.

“It is necessary to ensure that third countries comply with the highest environmental and nuclear safety standards in the EU’s neighborhood, and that all products imported into the EU, especially from energy-intensive industries, comply with environmental requirements for  manufacturers in the EU,” said L. Linkevičius.


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The President: Lithuania has an ambition of becoming a green economy and digitization leader

During the visit to the World Economic Forum in Davos, President Gitanas Nausėda attended a lunch for European leaders where he delivered a welcome address on stimulating economic growth in Central and Eastern Europe.

The President emphasized that the greatest potential for economic growth lies in adopting green technologies and promoting digitization in both private and public sectors. These processes must be geared towards promoting the well-being of people and based on innovation and efficient energy production.


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Skvernelis urges to refrain from attempts to reinterpret WWII consequences

Lithuanian Prime Minister Saulius Skvernelis has urged to refrain from attempts to reinterpret the consequences of World War II, especially regarding the sufferings and losses of the Jewish nation.

"I call on everyone to refrain from any attempt to reinterpret the brutal consequences of World War II and the occupation regimes on the Lithuanian state and its citizens. It is particularly important to bear in mind as we speak about the suffering and the unbearable loss of the Jewish people," Skvernelis said in a statement



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Vice-Minister of the Economy and Innovation Elijus Čivilis talks Digital Innovation in Lithuania
at the Smart Country Convention
|              Credits @ Bitcom

Vilnius part of global initiative to improve digital innovation

Twenty-one European capital cities, including Vilnius, were selected to receive tutoring and funding to improve services for residents using digital innovation, according to a press release.

“European capital cities are already among the world’s leaders when it comes to digitising government services to deliver better results for residents,” said Andrea Coleman of Bloomberg Philanthropies, the founders and sponsors of the two-year programme.

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Lithuania’s Startup Ecosystem Leaders: We Have to Join Our Forces to Improve Conditions for Startups in Lithuania


To attract more successful startups, Lithuania has to attract specialists from abroad and strengthen its initiatives among different institutions. The Lithuanian startup ecosystem has many opportunities that are not always taken – an integrated strategy for the startup ecosystem is needed. Often startup support programs for Lithuania reach only bigger cities, but it is crucial to use the features of every region in the country. These thoughts were shared among experts during the event organized by “CIVITTA” and “Kaunas IN”, discussing how to improve conditions for startups in Lithuania.

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Vilnius bans plastic tableware in city festivities


Single-use plastic tableware will no longer be used during public festivities in Vilnius, the local council decided on Wednesday.

The decision will come into force in early March.

The amendment was initiated by Lukas Savickas, a representative of the opposition Lithuanian Farmers and Greens Union on the Vilnius Council and an adviser to Prime Minister Saulius Skvernelis. He says the rule change is “a great chance for businesses to take on leadership in protecting the environment”.


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Lithuanian scientists create new breakthrough technology

Panevėžys Mechatronics Center (PMC) announced about the creation of a new breakthrough technology – PANDRONE – air pollution measurement system with the mobile drone. The project is designed for Panevezys municipality.

The mobile air pollution measurement system measures the concentrations of PM10, NO2, SO2, CO and O3 in the air. The operator lifts the airplane to a height of 20 meters and orbits the trajectory according to the prepared map. An on-board sensor system measures concentrations of airborne pollutants.

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Revising History One Infographic at a Time

Every year on the 13th of January, Lithuania commemorates the events of 1991 when Soviet forces attempted to crush the country’s recently re-established independence. On that winter night, Soviet troops, still garrisoned in the capital city of Vilnius, attacked its radio and television centre, killing civilians who had congregated there to form a human shield. More than a dozen people lost their lives, and hundreds more were wounded.

And every January, as Lithuania marks its Freedom Defenders’ day, the pro-Kremlin disinformation machine springs into motion to distort the historical record of these events.



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Around thirty soldiers from eFP’s 1st Battle Company went to Kryziu Kalnas, or the Hill of Crosses, on the 2nd of January. Two weeks earlier some of the soldiers built their own wooden cross to add to the hundreds of  thousands of crosses already on the hill.
       |              Credits @ NATO enhanced Forward Presence Battlegroup Lithuania

Lithuania: The 25 places you need to travel in 2020



The Baltics have long been the butt of cultural jokes. They’re gaining traction with road-trippers, rightfully, but some still picture cold, Soviet-era countries where NBA-almosts go to play out their basketball careers. The southernmost Baltic state, Lithuania isn’t always included on lists of beach destinations, despite having 150 miles of coast that could rival New England’s and claim to half of the 60-mile, UNESCO-listed Curonian Spit.

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Vilna Gaon: the central figure who made Vilnius the ‘Jerusalem of the North’

Vilna Gaon, the 18-century sage from 'Jerusalem of the North', has left a significant legacy of Jewish scholarship as well as many legends about his erudition and idiosyncratic devotion to study of religious texts.

Lithuania has designated 2020 the year of the History of Jews of Lithuania, which is also the 300th anniversary of the Vilna Gaon. Lara Lempertienė, a historian and the head of the Judaic Department at the Lithuanian National Library, spoke with LRT.lt about the 18-century sage from Vilnius.


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Vilnius to celebrate its birthday with the Second Annual Festival of Lights


Vilnius’ second annual Festival of Lights will be celebrating the city’s 697th birthday with 30 light installations from 24 to 26 January. The international festival will concentrate on the courtyards of Vilnius Old Town, bringing a bit of warmth to the cold mid-winter, drawing attention to the city’s architecture, and inviting people to explore some of its most stunning hidden corners.


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Kaunas invites to celebrate Day of the Republic of India


On January 25, Kaunas Picture Gallery (K. Donelaičio g. 16) invites everyone to celebrate the Day of the Republic of India, which is linked with the adoption of the country’s constitution on 26 January 1950.

At creative workshops, public will get a chance to draw traditional Indian ornaments on your hands and faces applying natural paint and many more activities.



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January 24-26
Hacker Games.Open data

For the first time in Vilnius, Hacker Games. Open data hackathon will invite participants to dive into 48 hours of creative work and create innovative products based on open data, with a chance to be rewarded for the best inventions.


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January 28 - 29
Tamsta Jazz Weekend


First of it's kind, Tamsta Jazz Weekend, will invite to hear what sounds in the most desired jazz pubs in London and what global jazz tendencies rise from the stage of this city

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January 31 - March 1
Su-Menėk: Vilnius Contemporary Art by Bus

Get on, get off, look around and feel. If you are feeling a bit strange but lifted, congratulations - you just got yourself art'ed. Explore 25 Vilnius art galleries and museums - get on a bus with SU-MENĖK logo and absorb the modern art across the city.

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Lithuanian culture centre to open in Poland's Suwalki

A Lithuanian culture centre in the northeastern Polish town of Suwalki, which is home to a large ethnic Lithuanian community, may open in March, the Lithuanian government says.

The culture centre and a kindergarten will be located in leased premises that are currently under renovation.

“The local authorities are helping us with the arrangements. These premises have already been leased and are currently being renovated,” Lithuanian Government Vice Chancellor Deividas Matulionis told BNS.


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Baltic Holidays will participate in the 2020 New York Times Travel show

The show is scheduled to take place on Friday, January 24, through Sunday, January 26, 2020. This year's event will showcase over 750 exhibitors, including Baltic Holidays which "specializes in creating tailor-made trips for their discerning clientele to destinations throughout the Baltic States of Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, and Scandinavia, Russia, and Eastern Europe."

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Lithuanian stories


As a part of the project "Laptevičiai", inspired by a journal of Dalia Grinkevičiūtė, follows steps of Lithuanian history and tells the stories from the darkest times.


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Highlight of the Week
Moment from Foreign Ministers' Council in Brussels, Belgium

Photo credits @ Tomas Razmus

Jan 25 2020

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