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Degutiene suggests Reagan research centre in Lithuania

Danuta Pavilenene, BC, Vilnius, 15.09.2011.Print version
The Lithuanian Seimas speaker, currently on a visit to the U.S., says Lithuania should establish a research centre after the name of former U.S. President Ronald Reagan.

Irena Degutiene with Reagan Foundation Executive Director John Heubusch and U.S. Congress member David Dreier. Photo:

In Washington, Irena Degutiene met with Reagan Foundation Executive Director John Heubusch and U.S. Congress member David Dreier and discussed the possibility of setting up Reagan's research centre in Lithuania.


"The establishment of such a centre in Vilnius would monumentalize President Reagan's ideas and political achievements and guarantee their continuation in Eastern Europe. Probably, there is not better way to commemorate the life and work of the President than this," said Degutiene.


The Seimas speaker recalled that the Baltic region, Eastern and Central Europe were very important to Reagan, His determination to stop the Cold War led to the collapse of the USSR and the liberation of Eastern Europe, Degutiene noted.


According to her, the U.S. and Lithuania should engage not only in military and economic cooperation, but also focus on cultural, intellectual and education ties.


"The Lithuania-based Reagan research centre could become a hub of ideas and analytical thought across the region, bringing the analytical communities of the U.S. and the Baltic States together and enforcing trans-Atlantic relations," said Degutiene.


U.S. Congressman Dreier said he was very happy that Lithuania participated in the programme for Reagan's centenary celebrations. Reagan Foundation Executive Director Heubusch said that the establishment of the Reagan centre in Vilnius was "only a question of time." Degutiene and Dreier agreed to discuss the idea of the centre in a greater detail during the congressman's visit to Lithuania in November.


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