- January 30, 2012
Poles in Norway defend their compatriots in Lithuania
The Union of Poles in Norway has issued a letter, signed by the president Jerzy Jankowski and vice-president Bogdan Kulas, addressed to the Prime Minister of the Republic of Poland, Donald Tusk, in which they expressed their regret over the situation of Poles in Lithuania.
„A student of the Junior High School under the name of John Paul II in Vilnius was beaten in front of the Polish Home for the fact that he was speaking Polish with his friends. Adult perpetrators kicked him into the state unconsciousness, at the same time using insults towards Poles.
Persecution of Poles in Vilnius Area has become an established practice, aiming at creation of hostile attitude towards Polish surnames, Polish names of localities, educational system in Polish schools, and most recently – draconian penalties for railway men of Polish origin, who spoke in a native language between each other.
Administrative tolerance of Lithuanian chauvinism creates an atmosphere in favour of all gestures aiming at the eradication of Polishness. In the aftermath of the assault committed by drunk Lithuanians on the young boy, Lithuanian media have remained silent on this matter, and the police calls into question the circumstances of the incident.
The Union of Poles in Norway demands from Lithuanian authorities an immediate cessation of all forms of prosecution of our compatriots in Lithuania and calls for severe punishment of criminal activities.
We expect diplomatic firmness from the governmental institutions of the Republic of Poland, as well as suppression of the striking practice of persecution of Poles in Lithuania.
We kindly request the authorities of Norway, as well as Scandinavian public opinion to gain interest in the problem of violation of fundamental human rights and destruction of European standards in the Republic of Lithuania.”
Tłumaczenie Małgorzata Juchniewicz w ramach praktyk w Europejskiej Fundacji Praw Człowieka, www.efhr.eu. Translated by Małgorzata Juchniewicz within the framework of a traineeship programme of the European Foundation of Human Rights, www.efhr.eu.