May 4, 2007
I am writing to clear the air on rumours circulated and promoted by Liberal Members of Parliament that suggest Canada will be closing its diplomatic mission to the Baltic countries of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. This politically motivated rumour is false.
Canada will not be closing its Baltic diplomatic mission which serves Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania.
When fellow members of the Baltic community first made me aware of the rumour, I immediately investigated the issue. I made inquiries with the Department of Foreign Affairs and with the Prime Minister’s Office. I met with my Cabinet colleague, Foreign Affairs Minister, Peter MacKay.
I am pleased to confirm to you that Canada will be maintaining its diplomatic mission to Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania.
Canada’s New Government values the important role Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania serve as partners in NATO and bulwarks of freedom, as vibrant free market economies, and as allies in Afghanistan.
It was the Conservative Government of Brian Mulroney that moved quickly, ahead of other countries in the world to recognize the restored independence of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania.
I am proud to be part of a Government that shares with the Baltics a strong commitment to freedom, democracy, human rights and the rule of law.
Hon. Peter Van Loan, MP
Leader of the Government in the House of Commons and Minister for Democratic Reform
Keeping Canadian Baltic Diplomatic Mission (2)