Lithuanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs fails to understand the evaluation of the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact made by the Russian President Vladimir Putin in an interview to Slovak Radio „Radio slovensko“ and TV station STV on 22 February.
In the interview the Russian President claimed that the Soviet Union signed the so-called Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact in order to “safeguard its interests and security of its western borders”. However, the protection of one’s interests may not serve as an excuse for annexation of another sovereign country.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Lithuania reminds that the Congress of the People’s Deputies of the USSR gave its political and legal evaluation of this notorious pact on 24 December 1989, whereby the Congress condemned the secret protocols and declared them void. Therefore an attempt to “explain” the legitimacy of the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact may be regarded as an attempt to once again turn over the already closed page of history and thus to review the decision of the Congress of the People’s Deputies of the USSR.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Lithuania is surprised with the comparison drawn by the Russian President that the 1938 Munich agreements with Great Britain and France were signed by Adolf Hitler personally while the 1939 agreement with the Soviet Union was signed “only” by the Foreign Minister of Hitler’s Germany.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Lithuania draws attention to the fact that the 1938 Munich conspiracy is by no means an excuse to justify the secret agreement between the USSR and the Government of Hitler’s Germany, which infringed on Lithuania’s sovereign rights.
Present intergovernmental relations between the Republic of Lithuania and the Russian Federation are based on the treaty of 1991, whereby both parties acknowledged the fact of the annexation of the Republic of Lithuania by the USSR and the Russian Federation committed to eliminate the consequences of annexation.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs would like to emphasize that this agreement has paved the way for the development of friendly Lithuanian-Russian relationship based on the interests of both states and their citizens and corresponding to the universally accepted international norms.
The citizens of Lithuania would greatly appreciate the reassurance by the Russian President that political will of the present Russian authorities will be based on the provisions of that agreement. Speculations about „those willing to rewrite the history” hardly contribute to good neighbourly relations and mutual understanding. History is such as it is and it may not be changed overnight.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Lithuania will make every effort to ensure that interpretations of the history will not cast a shadow over aspirations of both states to cherish good relationship and mutual commitments to do so. The Ministry will further seek to jointly solve the most urgent European and global issues of security, economic and social development.