L. Linkevičius: Strengthening EU resilience to disinformation will remain Lithuania’s priority
On 21 January, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania Linas Linkevičius attended the Foreign Affairs Council meeting, which discussed the action plan against disinformation.
Foreign ministers exchanged their views on the implementation of the action plan against disinformation. It was mainly initiated by Lithuania and approved by the Commission and the European External Action Service on 5 December 2018.
"We live in an age of fake news, disinformation and other hybrid threats that pose a very serious challenge for the unity and security of the EU and the West. Hostile third countries, first and foremost, Russia, systematically use disinformation to divide us and to undermine mutual trust in an attempt to influence democratic processes and decision-making. Enormous financial resources are allocated to that end,” said L. Linkevičius.
Lithuania’s Foreign Minister noted that the forthcoming European Parliament Elections would become another challenge, which would show the EU's resilience to third-country propaganda. Therefore, rapid and effective implementation of the action plan against disinformation is needed. Particular attention is paid to coordination and effective resource allocation, application of best practice approaches at European level for countering disinformation, cooperation with NATO and other international organizations, as well as the proper involvement of civil society and the media.
L. Linkevičius stressed the need to ensure that the fight against disinformation and other hybrid threats should be included on the EU’s new strategic agenda.
The so-called East Stratcom Task Force was created in the EU's External Action Service (EEAS) to "challenge Russia's ongoing disinformation campaigns" at Lithuania’s initiative in 2015.
The first report on the action plan against disinformation will be announced in March 2019.
For more information, please read here.