Statement of the Lithuanian MFA on illegitimate “elections” in Donetsk Oblast and Luhansk Oblast, parts of the Ukrainian territory
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania strongly condemns illegitimate “voting” conducted by the so-called “Donetsk People’s Republic” and “Luhansk People’s Republic” on 11 November that is contrary to norms of international law.
Such “elections” gravely violate the Minsk agreements as well as Ukrainian laws and do not create conditions for free expression of political will in the Ukrainian regions mentioned above. Further invasion of the Russian army into the Ukrainian territory, continuing violations of ceasefire, and the escalation of the situation in and militarisation of the Azov Sea are of particular concern. Such illegal actions grossly violate the territorial integrity of Ukraine and international agreements and will seriously affect future relations between the international community and Russia.
Lithuania firmly supports the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Ukraine. We underline once again that the Constitution of Ukraine and Ukrainian laws are the only legal basis for municipal elections on the Ukrainian territory.
We reiterate our condemnation of the continuing military aggression by the Russian Federation against Ukraine, the on-going escalation of the situation and militarisation of the Azov Sea, and we call on Russia to comply with its commitments, undertaken in Minsk, to withdraw its armed forces from the Ukrainian territory, to terminate any support to illegal armed formations in Donbas, and to restore control on the Russian-Ukrainian border. We underscore the importance of sanctions on Russia which should continue until the Minsk agreements are fully implemented and the territorial integrity of Ukraine is restored.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania allocated EUR 30 thousand in humanitarian aid to Ukraine which will be transferred to the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). This contribution is another step in implementing the Humanitarian Response Plan for Ukraine initiated by the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) that amounts to USD 187 million in 2018, however, has been implemented by only 38 per cent so far.
On 12 December, marking the 27th anniversary of the establishment of Lithuanian-Ukrainian diplomatic relations Minister Linas Linkevičius opened in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs the exhibition of paintings and posters by Ukrainian children dedicated to the 100th anniversary of the statehood of Lithuania. Two new publications featuring the history of Lithuania and Ukraine were presented during the opening of the exhibition.
On 1 October, the UNESCO executive team, representatives of international and non-governmental organisations, and experts together with diplomats of UNESCO Member States gathered in UNESCO headquarters to discuss the situation in the Autonomous Republic of Crimea (Ukraine) and the city of Sevastopol, illegally occupied by the Russian Federation.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania allocated EUR 50 thousand in humanitarian aid to Ukraine. The funds will be transferred to the United Nations (UN) migration agency, the International Organisation for Migration. This act is another contribution to the implementation of the Humanitarian Response Plan launched by the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs. The Plan aims at allocations which are expected to reach USD 187 million in 2018.
At the meeting of the European Union Foreign Affairs Council (FAC) in Luxembourg on 25 June, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Linas Linkevičius, informed his colleagues about his recent visit to Ukraine where he had met with top officials of Ukraine, with representatives of the opposition and members of the Tatar community.
Minister of Foreign Affairs, Linas Linkevičius, during his working visit to Kiev on 20 June, had a meeting with the President of Ukraine, Petro Poroshenko. The Minister expressed unwavering support to Ukrainian independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity and condemned Russian aggression in eastern Ukraine.