Leading Russian MP Condemns Lithuania's 'Anti-Russian' Border Policy

Dmitry Rogozin, the chairman of the Russian State Duma's Foreign Affairs Committee, considers recent attempts by Lithuania to complicate the transit procedure for passengers and freight between the Kaliningrad Region and Russia to be 'unacceptable improvisation.' Rogozin made his comments today at a meeting of the Duma's working group for monitoring the Kaliningrad problem. 'The agreement between Russia and the EU which was reached at last year's Brussels summit must be fully implemented,' stressed Rogozin.

'The very fact of having Russian citizenship is reason enough for private journeys by Russians to Kaliningrad. Since when have our citizens, when making a journey from one part of Russia to another across Lithuania, had to get off the train and provide information at the station about every member of their family?' said Rogozin. 'In order to detect a person who is unwelcome in the country it is enough to know his full name and exact date of birth. Even his passport number is not required.'

'Lithuania's tightening of its border control rules is evidence of its unfriendly, anti-Russian policy,' believes Rogozin. 'Lithuania's fears that maintaining the visa-free travel regime will lead to the country being flooded by illegal migrants from Russia are groundless. We haven't yet seen such a flow of immigrants, and there is no reason to suggest that it will occur in the future.'