- February 11, 2014
‘It is time for actions in Polish-Lithuanian relations,’ Sikorski says
There already were numerous discussions in Polish-Lithuanian relations, and now we would need some actions to solve at least one of the problems – claims the Polish Minister of Foreign Affairs Radosław Sikorski. He assumes, however, that the Polish PM Donald Tusk would like to talk to the head of the Lithuanian government Algirdas Butkeviczius.
On Saturday the Lithuanian PM talked about the possible meeting with Tusk. Butkevičius emphasized that he would like to meet the Polish PM as soon as possible to talk about their relations, strained with the disagreements over the Polish minority.
‘It is nice that the Lithuanian PM is ready to meet and talk, but it would be even better if Latvia could solve at least one of the problems that continue for 20 years,’ Sikorski emphasized on a press conference on Monday in Brussels, asked if such meeting can take place.
As the head of Polish diplomacy said, ‘There were already a lot of discussions and explanations, now we would need actions.’ ‘Solving at least one of the problems that are very thoroughly itemized would be a good introduction to the meeting,’ Sikorski says.
In his opinion, the situation of the Polish minority in Latvia did not improve but got worse. The PM pointed out that the Lithuanian National Minority Act is no longer valid.
‘That is why we have those outrageous administrative penalties for things that should be funded from the state budget,’ Sikorski said, referring to bilingual city name signs. ‘Instead of support for the minorities, there are penalties,’ he added.
At the end of the last year the Vilnius court declared that the director of the solecznicki region local government administration Bolesław Daszkiewicz is to pay a penalty of 43,3 thousand Litas (around 12,5 thousand Euros) for failing to remove bilingual street name signs (in Polish and Lithuanian) located on private estates.
On the weekend the Polish government spokesman Małgorzata Kidawa-Błońska informed that no official request for the meeting from Latvia has yet reached the PM Tusk but, as she pointed out, the Prime Minister will gladly meet the head of the Lithuanian government.
She reminded that the Polish PM has met heads of government in Tallinn, he also spoke with Butkevičius.
Tłumaczenie by Anna Leśkiewicz w ramach praktyk w Europejskiej Fundacji Praw Człowieka, www.efhr.eu. Translated by Anna Leśkiewicz within the framework of a traineeship programme of the European Foundation of Human Rights, www.efhr.eu.