Qualitative and Quantitative Parameters of the Execution of Foreign Policy in the Lithuanian Constitution

The present article analyses the qualitative and quantitative parameters of the execution of foreign policy in the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania. It should be noted that the matters of foreign policy were on the brink of constitutional regulation for a long time. The powers of institutions of the state in the field of foreign relations were established laconically by the Constitutions of first and second “waves” of establishment of constitutionalism. It was argued that the choices of decisions and the execution of foreign policy were determined by political reasons and the law could only fix the results of that policy. That is why these constitutions should be seen as establishing quantitative characteristics of action of the state institutions in the field of foreign policy. As a result of the changes in the concept of the Constitution and the general recognition of the relevance of constitutional regulation from the middle of the twentieth century the constitutional acts began to define not only the powers of certain state institutions in the field of the foreign policy but also the objectives and principles of this policy. These objectives and principles are qualitative parameters of the action of state institutions, which are mandatory constitutional requirements to all subjects engaged in foreign policy. From a qualitative standpoint, the powers of the state institutions can be exercised only by taking the constitutional objectives into account and by respecting the Constitution. The Constitution establishing both qualitative and quantitative characteristics of the execution of foreign policy becomes an actual basis of this policy. It is unlawful to execute foreign policy without complying with its objectives and constitutional principles. The institutions of constitutional review have the powers to determine the constitutionality of legal acts related to the execution of foreign policy. Constitutional regulations previous to the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania of 1992 only defined the powers of state institutions, i.e. the quantitative parameters of their action. The Lithuanian Constitution of 1992 also established the constitutional objectives and principles of foreign policy. This area of constitutional regulation has been enhanced by the participation of the Republic of Lithuania in the European Union. The author suggests analysing this matter as an autonomous constitutional principle and not only as a case of participation in international organisations or an integral element of the principle of geopolitical orientation. Constitutional objectives and principles of foreign policy, as well as the other provisions of the Constitution regarding the exercise of foreign policy, are interpreted in constitutional jurisprudence. In cases concerning the constitutionality of international treaties, laws and other legislative acts directly related to the exercise of foreign policy, the Constitutional Court reveals the content and meaning of the qualitative and quantitative constitutional parameters of foreign policy. Despite the fragmented nature of the case law one can see the precise contours of the foreign policy system
Keywords Konstitucija  konstitucinė kontrolė  valstybės institucijų įgaliojimai  objectifs et principes constitutionnels de la politique étrangère  Constitution  contrôle constitutionnel  užsienio politikos konstituciniai tikslai ir principai  pouvoirs des institutions étatiques
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