• March 30, 2016
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The Education System of the National Minorities Shapes a Pro-Russian Attitude, Says the Report

As it was written in the report prepared by the Intelligence System and published on Wednesday, closed education system of national communities of Lithuania that was left after the Soviet times, the network of schools, and too loose bond between the youth and the statehood of Lithuania, enables pro-Russian activity. However, the authors do not specify in what way this so called “closed system” influences the allegedly anti-civic attitude of the students.

Russian activists try to influence students of Polish and Russian schools. As presented in the report, in 2015 the representatives of the so called Sooteczestwiennicy (Russia’s co-citizens) continued the education of the young generation of activists loyal to Russia.

“Conducting such activities is enabled by the closed education system of national communities of Lithuania that was left after the Soviet times, the network of schools, and too loose bond between the youth and the statehood of Lithuania” states the report.

The authors of the report explain that it relates to the propagandistic conferences, young journalists associations, the celebrations of Soviet state holidays and other parties organized by the activists. Often, during such actions Soviet conception of history is imbued, which diminishes the importance of Lithuania’s statehood.

It was presented in the report that in 2015, the students from Visaginas took part in a competition together with the paramilitary, pro-Russian groups. For example the group called Ударный батальон смерти (Strike Battalion of Death) consisted of students from Atgimimo, Verdenės junior high, and Gerosios vilties lower level junior high in Visaginas.

The authors of the report sum up that: “the activity, financed by Russia, has not yet bred too many leaders of Russian youth in Lithuania loyal to Russia, who could negatively influence the social development processes. However, sympathetic climate for dissemination of Russian influence, which was shaped in the schools of national communities of Lithuania, could do a lot of harm to Lithuania’s national safety.”

Translated by Marta Didyk within the framework of a traineeship programme of the European Foundation of Human Rights, www.efhr.eu.

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