- April 30, 2014
Waldemar Tomaszewski answered the questions of DELFI readers
Waldemar Tomaszewski answered the questions of DELFI readers live in MyEP studio.
You can find the answers to the questions in Lithuanian here.
Some part of the answers in Polish is presented below.
The reader Pranas asked: „Will Jarosław Niewierowicz still hold office of Minister after the election? You mentioned that a conflict between the Minister and the PM Butkevicius had been provoked by Grybauskaite.”
Waldemar Tomaszewski: There is no conflict. In politics we often have to do with divergent views. That problem has been already solved a long time ago.
Anatolij: Today DELFI has informed that the Polish expert Bolesław Piasecki noticed the actions of Russia towards Lithuania and Poland, and that we might expect provocation in the Vilnius region. Have you heard about such provocations?
W.T.: No, I have not. There were a few provocations created by our nationalists. The plates in Eišiškės and Jašiūnai were ripped off. Our proper institutions could have given it more attention instead of searching for enemies abroad.
Alfredas: A historical question: Do you believe that the Vilnius region was occupied by Poland in the interwar period? I would appreciate an unambiguous answer.
W. T.: That is a historical question, so it should be answered by historians. The Polish Minister of Foreign Affairs Sikorski, for example, said he did not believe the Vilnius region was occupied. Apparently there is some legal basis. As far as I understood, he talked about the recognition of the borders after the First World War during the League of Nations’ conference.
Patriotas: The Polish economy overcame all of the crises. Was it possible thanks to the brilliant Polish politicians? Maybe we need more people of Polish nationality holding key offices in our government?
W. T.: In Poland there is a huge domestic consumption and that is why this country is so resistant to crises. We need to increase the consumption and people’s earnings instead of saving at the expense of them. As a consequence, we will have better economic indicators. What is more, Poland does not plan to introduce the euro so quickly.
Onute: Russian aggression in Ukraine appalled the whole Europe. Do you think that the Baltic states are in danger? What do we need to do, how can we protect ourselves?
W. T.: We are in NATO, we are not in danger. We do not need to speculate on that matters. There will be no war. On the issue of Ukraine, we need to search for the root of the conflict. All began on Maidan and was clearly supported by our politicians. I believe we should not interfere in others’ matters. We should choose authorities through the ballot box and not during rallies, especially the ones during which the blood is shed. We suffer the consequences of those ill-considered decisions now.
Partinis: Why is your party not especially active in Samogitia? I have no doubt it would be strongly supported.
W. T.: I receive a lot of letters from people from Samogitia who want to join my party. I appreciate such an attitude of people from the Samogitia region. I believe more and more electors are becoming aware of the fact that honesty is what really matters in politics. The party which I am a leader of has never been involved in corruption scandals and did not accept any funds from entrepreneurs. As the only party of the ruling coalition it did not vote in favor of pay raises for the Seimas deputies. We believe that we should start the fight against corruption and striving for social justice with ourselves.
XXL: How do you assess a foreign policy pursued by Dalia Grybauskaite? Towards Poland, towards Russia? What would you change?
W. T.: We do not need a pro-war rhetoric or searching for enemies. We should try to talk, discuss, negotiate and to reach an agreement with our neighbors. Unfortunately, today we lack that, so I could not assess the foreign policy positively.
Saulute: Why do you want to become a president? Why should I vote for you?
W. T.: First of all, people trusted me, so I could not reject their proposition of running for election. Otherwise I would have disappointed or maybe even betrayed them. If I become a president, I will strive for social justice so that our country could be for all of us and not just for the rich who often earned their money in a dishonest way. I have been politically active for 22 years, I am experienced in working in a self-government, the Seimas, the European Parliament. Once a month I preside over the Coalition Council. I got closely acquainted with work in the government, I know the Lithuanian politicians well and I know how to distinguish those who are honest from those who are not, I also know who should hold responsible positions. I know what our people need and I know how to achieve it and who to do it with. I believe our country needs such changes and I am ready to start them.
Grazuolis: Polish or Lithuanian girls, who is prettier?
W. T.: Both Polish and Lithuanian girls are really beautiful. I often go to the West, so I can draw a comparison. All of our girls are beautiful, Poles, Lithuanians, Russians and other girls.
Lietuvaite: Can we trust you in case of danger from Russia? Show us that we can.
W. T.: I repeat – there is no danger. We do not need to speculate and frighten the society. If I become a president, I will manage to reach an agreement with all of the neighbors. There will be no tension and the economy will boost.
Sławek: Good morning! Will the Day of Polonia be not celebrated in Vilnius because of the fact the presidential and the European Parliament election is going to be held soon? Thank you!
W.T: May the 2nd is the Day of Poles abroad. That day is also celebrated by the Polish people in Lithuania. They will also celebrate it this year, but a parade is held in years when that day is a day off. That is why the parade will be held next year. Election has nothing to do with it.
Vilniete: Mr Tomaszewski, do you really believe you can win the presidential election and how long are you going to run for office before you think to yourself, it is enough?
W. T.: This is just the second time I run for office and it was not my personal choice. It was even not a proposition of my electoral committee, but a request made by people who trust me. In such a situation I am not afraid of responsibility. Even today someone from Samogitia asked a question and wrote that they want to vote for me. That is an assessment of our honest activity. I always work and I will be working for the man in the street, for ordinary people, not for the group of people interested. Running for office or being elected is not an end in itself, it is a means of implementing election manifesto and helping people.
Tłumaczenie by Martyna Kołtun w ramach praktyk w Europejskiej Fundacji Praw Człowieka, www.efhr.eu. Translated by Martyna Kołtun within the framework of a traineeship programme of the European Foundation of Human Rights, www.efhr.eu.