Hannibalsson, a 78-year-old diplomat and professor at Reykjavik University, died on 28 December, Gina Kazlauskienė of the Lithuanian Foreign Ministry confirmed to BNS. He was the brother of Iceland's former foreign minister Jonas Baldvin Hannibalsson.
Lithuanian Independence Act signatory Bronislovas Genzelis has said the Hannibalsson brothers had strongly supported the Baltic independence efforts and greatly contributed to the international recognition of Lithuania's independence.
"The entire Hannibalsson family were ardent enthusiasts of Lithuania's independence," Lithuanian MP Emanuelis Zingeris, also a signatory, told BNS.
According to him, the former foreign minister's daughter is currently working on a documentary describing the developments in Lithuania and Iceland two decades ago.
"We must do everything that, as soon as Iceland decides on fishing zones, the procedure of Iceland's accession (to the European Union) is started during Lithuania's presidency over the European Union Council (in the second half of 2013)," said Zingeris, emphasizing this was Lithuania's moral duty to Iceland.
In February 2010, Hannibalsson was awarded the Cross of Commander of the Order for Merits to Lithuania.
On 11 February 1991, Iceland was the first foreign country to officially recognize Lithuania as an independent state. Lithuanian-Icelandic diplomatic ties were started on 26 August 1991 during Hannibalsson's term as foreign minister.
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