- July 9, 2014
Delegation of Members: National and Ethnic Minorities Act is a blackmail by AWPL
On Thursday, Parliament will continue to consider National and Ethnic Minorities Act that was harshly criticized by some Members. Amongst opponents were not only representatives of Conservatives and politicians supporting national ideas but also liberals Eugenijus Gentvilas and Dalia Kuodytė.
“Parliament is currently considering National and Ethnic Minorities Act that is adapted only to one, Polish national minority, but ignoring 150 other nationalities”, wrote D. Kuodytė in her statement.
Non Qualitative Act
“We should call it what it is – this is not a National and Ethnic Minorities Act. This is Non Qualitative Act that is more likely to be a manual for displaying Polish plates. I respect people from Poland and their interests but can we ignore 150 other national communities? Lithuania does not need a legislation that will save a few residents from Vilnius and Solecznicki region from penalties”, declared a Minister. Liberals accused the government that during two years they haven’t managed to prepare a Qualitative Act.
“National minorities living in Lithuania are not waiting for “mercy” from AWPL. It looks like this Act is necessary only for representatives of AWPL, not for people. If we are talking about distinctive National Minorities Act, then this Act should be compatible with conventions of ONZ and of all national minorities”, wrote D. Kuodytė.
Parliamentary group “Za wierność przysiędze” made a special declaration. In the statement ministers expressed their concerns that social democrats are succumbing to blackmail of Electioneering of Poles in Lithuania whose “main goal is dividing Lithuanian society”. According to ministers, the Act is isolating only one national minority and also it is against the constitution. “Fraction of Social Democrats and their party supported the project in order to gain Ministers of AWPL’s favor in time of appointment of Prime Minister and government after presidential inauguration. Those actions are constituting the basis for doubts if Ministers had not broken their oath”, was written in the statement.
Members of Parliamentary group “Za wierność przysiędze” are appealing to all leaders and members of the ruling coalition to hear the words of President Dalii Grybauskaitė that Lithuanian language is not the subject of political dispute”. We also call for respect for Republic of Lithuania and being faithful to Minister’s oath”, wrote Ministers Rima Baškienė, Vitalijus Gailius, Eugenijus Gentvilas, Sergejus Jovaiša, Vytautas Juozapaitis, Rytas Kupčinskas, Vytautas Antanas Matulevičius, Algirdas Vaclovas Patackas, Naglis Puteikis, Paulius Saudargas, Povilas Urbšys.
Translated by Edyta Zarzeczna within the framework of a traineeship programme of the European Foundation of Human Rights, www.efhr.eu.