Lithua­nian mu­nic­i­pal­ity says ex­er­cise fu­els hos­til­ity against poland

The Baltic Times - - BALTIC NEWS - BNS/TBT Staff

Mu­nic­i­pal­ity of Sal­cininkai, south­east­ern Lithua­nia, has dis­missed as provo­ca­tion the re­cent ex­er­cise of de­ter­ring a sabo­teur at­tack.

Ac­cord­ing to the mu­nic­i­pal­ity, the rhetoric of the ex­er­cise or­ga­nized by In­te­rior Min­is­ter Eimutis Mi­si­u­nas in­sti­gated na­tional ha­tred and hos­til­ity of the Lithua­nian com­mu­nity against Poland.

“Procla­ma­tion of the Peo­ple’s Repub­lic of Sal­cininkai, a name that is par­al­lel to the Don­bass Peo­ple’s Repub­lic es­tab­lished dur­ing the Ukrainian-rus­sian con­flict, and iden­ti­fi­ca­tion of the Sal­cininkai res­i­dents with Don­bass sep­a­ratists, is a cyn­i­cal provo­ca­tion and yet an­other mock­ery of so­ci­ety,” reads the mu­nic­i­pal­ity’s press re­lease.

The mu­nic­i­pal­ity’s of­fi­cials say that Lithua­nia’s cen­tral ad­min­is­tra­tion, which did not no­tify about the ex­er­cise in ad­vance, “ig­nores the lo­cal ad­min­is­tra­tion and ma­nip­u­lates the dis­trict, which is home to na­tional mi­nori­ties.”

Three out of four lo­cal res­i­dents are Poles. Among 25 mem­bers of the lo­cal coun­cil, 21 rep­re­sent the Elec­toral Ac­tion of Poles in Lithua­nia.

The in­te­rior min­is­ter, Mi­si­u­nas, apol­o­gized to the lo­cal pop­u­la­tion for the in­con­ve­niences, em­pha­siz­ing that the eth­nic com­po­si­tion of the lo­cal pop­u­la­tion was not a fac­tor in the choice of the lo­ca­tion for the ex­er­cise.

“The ex­er­cise will be re­peated in other parts of Lithua­nia, there­fore, the ac­cu­sa­tions of dis­tin­guish­ing the mi­nori­ties are un­grounded,” Mi­si­u­nas said via his spokesman.

The In­te­rior Min­istry’s train­ing fo­cused on re­sponse to troops wear­ing uni­forms with­out any dis­tin­guish­ing signs. The sce­nario re­minds us of the 2014 an­nex­a­tion of Crimea, when Rus­sian troops en­tered the re­gion with civil­ian cloth­ing and uni­forms with­out any signs. The Rus­sian forces were dubbed as “lit­tle green men.”

Un­der the tac­ti­cal train­ing sce­nario worked out by in­struc­tions from In­te­rior Min­istry Eimutis Mi­si­u­nas, spe­cial forces of a coun­try hos­tile to Lithua­nia have il­le­gally crossed the border and read­ied to take over one of the border check­points and the Sal­cininkai po­lice sta­tion.

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