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The government approved a memorandum between the Baltic states on cooperation in easing the restrictions on the borders

12. May 2020 - 0:00

Tallinn, Stenbock House, 12 May 2020 – As a session resolution, the government approved a memorandum of mutual understanding on cooperation and lifting the restrictions of movement of road, railway, air, and maritime transport established due to the COVID-19 crisis between the ministries of foreign affairs of the Republic of Estonia, the Republic of Lithuania, and the Republic of Latvia.

Pursuant to the decision of the government of 8 May, free movement between the three Baltic states will be restored on 15 May for residents of Estonia, Lithuania, and Latvia and for people staying there legally, provided that they show no symptoms of COVID-19. As of then, the temporarily restored border control and guarding of the state border at the Estonian-Latvian border will stop, and those arriving from Lithuania and Latvia no longer have to stay home for 14 days, except for persons who arrived from outside the Baltic states.

The memorandum of mutual understanding to be concluded between the ministers of foreign affairs of the three states that was approved today by the government provides the general framework for mutual cooperation and trilateral lifting of restrictions on movement established due to the COVID-19 crisis.

The cooperation between the three Baltic states to ease the restrictions concerning border crossing was initiated by Prime Minister Jüri Ratas, together with his Latvian and Lithuanian counterparts Krišjānis Kariņš and Saulius Skvernelis, at a video meeting on 22 April. On 6 May, the prime ministers of the three states decided to open their borders on 15 May. The government’s cabinet meeting supported the proposal to end the restrictions on movement between Estonia, Lithuania, and Latvia on 15 May, provided that people arriving in Estonia, Lithuania, or Latvia from third countries will stay in isolation for 14 days, and that the police boards of Estonia, Lithuania, and Latvia ensure the necessary information exchange to achieve this.