"Once Lithuania takes the helm of the EU in the beginning of July, so-called Italian protest actions will spread to main Lithuanian border posts on the external borders of the EU," the Trade Union of Lithuanian Border Guards said in a press release on Thursday.
Vladimir Banel, chairman of the trade union, said every automobile crossing the border will be subjected to “extremely thorough and detailed examination, no matter how much time it takes." He recalled that a similar protest was staged at two checkpoints two years ago, adding that the protest only lasted for four hours but caused long lines at the Medininkai and Šalčininkai checkpoints.
In Banel's words, the trade union demands that border guards receive at least 10-percent higher pay this year and 2014 wages should be returned to the 2008 level, as well as have the issue of their social guarantees solved.
According to the press release, the financing of the border guard system has been slashed by more than 25 percent since 2008, and about 350 border guards left the service in 2012 alone.