Lithuania reminds Pilsudski’s words to Polish minister who denied Vilnius’ occupation

June 3, 2009 at 3:46 pm 12 comments

As the BNS informed Lithuania sent a message to Poland’s Foreign Minister Radoslaw Sikorski who recently denied Poland’s occupation of the Vilnius region.  The statement quoted  the then political figures, Marshall Jozef Pilsudski and Mykolas Riomeris, who did not question that Vilnius was a part of Lithuania.

According to information available to BNS, Lithuanian Foreign Minister Vygaudas Usackas sent the reply to Sikorski’s statement via the embassy in Warsaw.

It came following a live interview of Sikorski on the Polish television a few days ago where he said that Poland had not occupied the Lithuanian capital in the interwar period.

“Lithuania believes that we occupied Vilnius in the interwar period, but we have a different take on this,” Sikorski said.

Lithuania’s stance is that Poland unlawfully occupied Vilnius in the interwar period, thus ceasing diplomatic relations between the two countries between World War I and World War II.

BNS noted that the letter sent to the Polish minister cites a speech made by Pilsudski, the head of the Polish state, in Vilnius on April 20 1922. Pilsudski then said that Vilnius had entered a new life, “which is shaping in a different manner than that of its historic past.” Pilsudski added that Vilnius had been raised to “the rank of capitals” “by enormous efforts of the Lithuanian nation.”

Sikorski will also receive a copy of a strong-worded statement made by Lithuania’s interwar lawyer Mykolas Riomeris whom Pilsudski has unsuccessfully asked to head the pro-Polish Lithuanian government. Riomeris then wrote: “Vilnius – a creation and capital of Lithuania – is and continues to be what has been developed through enormous will of generations and the nation: all other combinations will collapse, all speculative attempts to fabricate a different origin of Vilnius through the annexation act, the Seimas resolution, etc. will collapse as a feeble modern house built by today’s Poles for a profit in Warsaw or Vilnius.”

Lithuania’s response to the Polish minister’s words came a few days following reports in the Polish media about cancelled preparation of a two-language history textbook on Lithuania and Poland amid the economic “crisis.”

Vice-chairman of the Assembly of Lithuanian and Polish Parliaments, Artur Gorski, told the Catholic daily Nasz Dziennik that publishing of a Lithuanian-Polish history textbook may become a hardly feasible task in the current downturn.

“Lithuanians have a controversial view of our common history, starting with the times of Jogaila, who they just recently stopped calling a traitor, and Jozef Pilsudski for years was one of the key persecutors of Lithuanians, equalled to Stalin and Hitler,” said Gorski, a member of the Polish parliament’s Commission on Education, Science and Youth.

Lithuania maintains that Poland occupied Vilnius in 1920, thus violating the Suwalki treaty that handed Vilnius to Lithuania. Elections later held in the Vilnius region resulted in the election of a Seimas that decided to become part of Poland. Lithuania did not recognize validity of the unilateral moves and believes it was an unlawful incursion. Lithuania regained control of Vilnius in 1939.

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Entry filed under: Baltic States, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Northern Europe, Poland, Politics.

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12 Comments Add your own

  • 1. wacław  |  June 4, 2009 at 11:14 am

    Yeah, 2% of Vilnius citizens were ethnic Lithuanians in interwar period, and you call it occupation. Great. Why don’t you say that Minsk is still under belarussian occupation.

    Reply
    • 2. Orint  |  December 22, 2009 at 7:33 am

      Between 1857-1863 the Russians did several separate ethnographic studies of Vilnius gubernija. Lebedkin found 71% Lithuanians and 29% slavs (comprising Poles, Russians and Bielorussians); Koreva found 67% Lithuanians and 33% slavs;
      D’Erkert 66% Lithuanians and 34% slavs. So where did all the
      Lithuanians go and where did the Poles come from? Was there a plague that wiped out just the Lithuanians? Did the Poles’ birthrate increase so greatly? Or, is there something wrong with the often repeated Polish statistics for the interwar years?

      Reply
      • 3. ldk  |  February 24, 2014 at 3:39 am

        They just killed all the Lithuanians and polonized the rest by outlawing the Lithuanian language. Even to speak Lithuanian in public was punished as a crime by the fascist Poles. Also they changed the statistics like they do to this day in the Seiniai, Suvalkai and Augustavas regions to minimize Lithuanian influence. There is also a discrimination against Lithuanians in the said occupied regions by Poland still to this day, to assimilate. As Lithuanians are hated by the Poles who wish to repolonize all Lithuania. If given a chance these fascists would take over all Vilnius. Even during the interwar period Poland tried to take over entire Lithuanian region and the likes of Pilsudski committed nothing less but genocide against Lithuanians in what is modern day Belarus. Pilsudski is rightly so compared to Hitler and Stalin.

  • 4. Justė  |  June 13, 2009 at 6:53 pm

    Nobody sane and prominent in Lithuania ever compared Pilsudski or Zeligowski to Hitler or Stalin, but it’s a fact that some Lithuanian civilians were brutally killed by Poles without a good reason in their times in Vilnius region.
    That Pole exaggerate to undermine the Lithuanian claims all together.

    Reply
  • 5. Anonymous  |  December 28, 2010 at 12:46 pm

    […] […]

    Reply
  • 6. Arvydas Damijonaitis  |  September 25, 2011 at 1:50 pm

    INFORMACIJA; Kokiu teisiniu pagrindu Jaltos konferencija atidavė paranoikui J.Stalinui visą Rytų Europą?Kokiu teisiniu pagrindu Prūsijos gyventojai,apie 1,5 milijono senių,vaikų 1944 m buvo masiškai išžudyti?Tai yra karo nusikaltimai,neturintys senaties termino.Taip ir Vilniaus okupacija,buvo J. Pilsudskio suderinta su Vokietija,mainais už Dancigo koridorių. Lenkija teisiog buvo “įspirta” į Lietuvą.J.Pilsudskis buvo Vokietijos slaptai angažuotas.J.Pilsudskio Lenkija leido vokiečiams realizuoti Dancigo koridoriaus idėją ,todėl J.Pilsudskis yra vienas iš niekingiausių Europos politikų,klastingai okupavęs Rytų Lietuvą,mainais atidavęs vokiečiams Lenkijos pajūrio sritis.
    Arvydas Damijonaitis

    Reply
  • 7. Arvydas Damijonaitis  |  September 25, 2011 at 9:58 pm

    INFORMACIJA: J. PILSUDSKIS – niekingiausias,lietuvių kilmės,lenkų politikas. Kokiu teisiniu pagrindu Jaltos konferencija atidavė paranoikui J.Stalinui visą Rytų Europą?Kokiu teisiniu pagrindu Prūsijos gyventojai,apie 1,5 milijono senių,vaikų 1944 m buvo masiškai išžudyti?Tai yra karo nusikaltimai,neturintys senaties termino.Taip ir Vilniaus okupacija,buvo J. Pilsudskio suderinta su Vokietija,mainais už Dancigo koridorių. Lenkija teisiog buvo “įspirta” į Lietuvą.J.Pilsudskis buvo Vokietijos slaptai angažuotas.J.Pilsudskio Lenkija leido vokiečiams realizuoti Dancigo koridoriaus idėją ,todėl J.Pilsudskis yra vienas iš niekingiausių Europos politikų,klastingai okupavęs dalį savo tėvynės,Rytų Lietuvą,mainais atidavęs vokiečiams Lenkijos pajūrio sritis.
    Arvydas Damijonaitis

    Reply
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  • […] irked Lithuanian officials, with his comment about Lithuania’s capital Vilnius, which was part of Poland between the two […]

    Reply
  • […] irked Lithuanian officials, with his comment about Lithuania’s capital Vilnius, which was part of Poland between the two […]

    Reply
  • […] irked Lithuanian officials, with his comment about Lithuania’s capital Vilnius, which was part of Poland between the two […]

    Reply
  • 12. Eurasian American Chamber of Commerce  |  February 7, 2014 at 2:06 pm

    […] – irked Lithuanian officials, with his comment about Lithuania’s capital Vilnius, which was part of Poland between the two world wars […]

    Reply

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