On 12 March the President of Lithuania Dalia Grybauskaitė took part in a high level meeting on Women in Power at the invitation of María Fernanda Espinosa Garcés, President of the United Nations General Assembly. The event aims to attract attention to major obstacles for women’s participation in politics and business, promote women’s leadership and share experiences on women’s empowerment.
The event hosted by President of the UN General Assembly María Fernanda Espinosa Garcés was attended by UN Secretary-General António Guterres, President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović of Croatia, President Kersti Kaljulaid of Estonia, the presidents of Nepal, Trinidad and Tobago, the prime minister of Iceland, the vice president of Columbia, the vice president of Panama, EU High Representative for Foreign and Security Policy Federica Mogherini, ministers, and other high ranking officials.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania has allocated EUR 20, 000 for humanitarian aid in Yemen. The funds will be transferred to the United Nations Yemen Humanitarian Fund.
These actions contribute to the implementation of the Yemen Humanitarian Response Plan (YHRP) of the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA). The UN appealed for $4 billion to cover humanitarian needs in Yemen in 2019.
On 4 February, the Permanent Representative of Lithuania to the United Nations, Ambassador Audra Plepytė deposited an instrument of accession to the Convention on Road Traffic with the United Nations.
Lithuania's accession to this Convention allows Lithuanian driving license holders to drive in countries that have ratified the Geneva Convention on the Road Traffic. On 2 October 2018, the Seimas ratified the Convention, which was signed on 19 September 1949 in Geneva. Law on Ratification of the Road Traffic Convention came into force on 1 January 2019.
The Lithuanian Diplomatic Service marks its 100th anniversary on 7 November 2018. In their congratulatory messages, the leaders of the United Nations and NATO underline the contribution of Lithuanian diplomacy into international organisations and the significance of diplomatic activities while aspiring to independence during the soviet occupation.
President Dalia Grybauskaitė, who chairs the Council of Women World Leaders, held a high-level event on economic growth through women’s empowerment at the United Nations General Assembly.
Taking part were UN Secretary-General António Guterres, Croatian President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović, Estonian President Kersti Kaljulaid, Maltese President Marie-Louise Coleiro, Prime Ministers of Norway and Bangladesh, President of the World Bank Jim Yong Kim, and UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet.
On 27 September, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania Linas Linkevičius attended a high-level side event “Engaging youth in mediation – a step towards lasting peace” of the UN General Assembly, which was organized by the Group of Friends of Mediation.
On 12 June at the United Nations Headquarters in New York, the Lithuanian representative, Professor Jonas Ruškus was re-elected to serve a second term on the Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). Having won the second largest number of electoral votes, Lithuania's candidate was elected in the first round.
On 5 June, Professor Dainius Pūras, United Nations Special Rapporteur on the right of everyone to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of health was elected as Chairperson of the Coordination Committee of Special Procedures of the United Nations Human Rights Council. He will coordinate the work of about 80 independent UN experts, who implement the organization's mandates in the field of human rights.
On 23 May, the Permanent Representative of Lithuania to the United Nations, Ambassador Audra Plepytė presented her letters of credence to the Secretary-General of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Irwin LaRocque in Georgetown, capital city of Guyana.
During the visit to New York on 17-18 May 2018, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania Linas Linkevičius met with the Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs of the United Nations Rosemary A. Di Carlo and the Head of UN Peacekeeping Jean-Pierre Lacroix. In the meetings, The Foreign Minister presented Lithuania's priorities at the United Nations and discussed the country‘s further engagement in UN peacekeeping missions.
In the meeting with Di Carlo, Linkevičius discussed the need to continue to keep the issue of Ukraine's conflict not only on the UN agenda, but especially atop the Security Council agenda and an opportunity for the UN to engage more in resolving the conflict in Ukraine. Lithuania's Foreign Minister and the Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs discussed the UN role in Syrian peace talks, the North Korean nuclear issue, and mounting tensions in Gaza.