Goverment news 2016 04 28
Prime Minister Butkevičius: we are looking for ways to help Crimean Tatars
A. Mickevičius/LRVK photo
Prime Minister Algirdas Butkevičius has met with heads of the Crimean Tatars Mustafa Dzhemilev and Refat Chubarov, as well as other members of the Steering Committee of the World Congress of Crimean Tatars, currently held in Vilnius. The Prime Minister has assured the guests that Lithuania supports Ukraine’s sovereignty and makes every effort that the issue of the occupied territories and the situation of the Crimean Tatars therein was dealt with at the international level.
“We do everything to maintain the matter of Crimea’s annexation on the agenda of the international community. We are convinced that there is no room for compromises here”, stressed the Head of Government.
According to the Prime Minister, Lithuania has been closely following the situation in the Crimean peninsula and has voiced concern about the situation of the Crimean Tatars: their continued persecution and restrictions on freedom of religion and expression.
“I want to strongly emphasise that we sincerely seek that the voice of the Crimean Tatars was heard, and we are constantly looking for ways to solve the situation at the international level”, said the Prime Minister.
In 2014, on Lithuania’s initiative, the United Nations Security Council held 11 meetings to denounce occupation and to deal with the matter of Ukraine’s integrity; last year three meetings on the situation in Ukraine were held. Lithuania has backed Ukraine’s candidacy for non-permanent members of the Security Council for the years 2016-2017.
The meeting has also discussed promotion of Tatar national education and culture as well as improvement of the situation of Tatars living in other regions of Ukraine.
The Steering Committee of the World Congress of Crimean Tatars aims to attract the world’s attention to the situation of the Crimean Tatars and Crimea’s occupation and annexation, and to deal with the current agenda at the level of the Crimean Tatar diaspora around the world.