Speaker of the Seimas: ‘We are safe because we are not alone; Ukraine must also be among us’
Press release, 29 March 2022
On 29 March 2022, Viktorija Čmilytė-Nielsen, Speaker of the Seimas, invites us to mark the 18th anniversary of Lithuania’s accession to the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO).
‘We are safe because we are not alone. In the present-day context, it has never been more obvious that Lithuania has once taken a truly right and vitally important decision to follow the Western path, choose new partners, make a decisive shift in its security policy, and pursue a new model of economic cooperation. It is already 18 years since Lithuania achieved one of its most important goals, namely, the membership of NATO. This took us a decade following the expression of interest in 1994.
Over that decade, we had to pull out all the stops in the face of the scepticism similar in scale to the scepticism we see about Ukraine today. Both the Kaliningrad Region and transit matters posed obstacles. Nevertheless, we proved to be worthy of being in NATO. Today, Ukraine seeks NATO membership by paying a price beyond measure, particularly, in terms of human victims and loss of lives. This country, which recognises Western values and demonstrates tremendous courage, must take its place next to other countries of the democratic world. Ukraine has now become a security shield for the region. And we must immediately extend NATO’s security shield to Ukraine to make it safe as well,’ said Ms Čmilytė-Nielsen.
Photo by Olga Posaškova, Office of the Seimas
Ilona Petrovė, Spokesperson of Viktorija Čmilytė-Nielsen, Speaker of the Seimas, tel. +370 5 239 6030, mob. +370 698 42071, e-mail: [email protected]