On Wednesday, 28 June, the speakers of the parliaments of the Baltic States issued a joint statement saying: “We are convinced that ultimately Ukraine’s security in the long-run can be best guaranteed by the collective defence of NATO. We call on NATO leaders to start a substantive process of inviting Ukraine to join NATO at the Summit in Vilnius.”
In their joint statement Edvards Smiltēns, Speaker of the Saeima, Lauri Hussar, Speaker of the Parliament of Estonia, and Viktorija Čmilytė-Nielsen, Speaker of the Parliament of Lithuania, call on the whole international community to increase the support to Ukraine in its ongoing struggle for freedom and territorial integrity. “Our focus must stay on assisting Ukraine. Together with our Allies and partners we will continue providing all the necessary support to Ukraine for as long as necessary, until Ukraine´s victory,” the statement notes.
The speakers of the parliaments of the Baltic States also call for continued efforts to help Ukraine win not only its fight for freedom, but also its fight for justice. The speakers call for establishment of a special international tribunal under the auspices of the UN General Assembly to prosecute the crime of aggression committed by the leadership of the Russian Federation.
While the recent “march of justice” on Moscow by Prigozhin’s Wagner mercenary group is Russia’s internal matter, it is yet another sign of the unpredictability of Russia. Russia’s military aggression against Ukraine remains the greatest threat to European security since the Second World War, the statement indicates.
The speakers of the parliaments of Latvia, Estonia and Lithuania urge for continued vigilance, stating that individually and with our NATO Allies we must continue strengthening collective defence and deterrence, as well as border security in NATO´s eastern flank bordering Russia and Belarus. “We look forward to concrete action on this goal at the forthcoming NATO Summit in Vilnius,” the statement affirms.
Our parliaments have long labelled the Wagner mercenary group as a terrorist organization for the atrocities committed by its members on the territory of Ukraine and against the Ukrainian population, the statement notes. The speakers of the parliaments of the Baltic States reiterate their call on the European Union (EU) to include the Wagner mercenary group in the list of persons, groups and entities involved in terrorist acts (EU terrorist list), not least for the violence and instability the group spreads on the African continent and elsewhere.
“The emergence of the Wagner mercenary group in Belarus could make the security situation on the eastern borders of NATO and the EU even more precarious. We reiterate our condemnation of Lukashenko’s regime in Belarus for supporting Russia’s war against Ukraine. The harbouring of the terrorist organization Wagner Group by Belarus is unacceptable and we call for further strengthening sanctions against Belarus,” emphasise the speakers of the parliaments of the Baltic States.
Saeima Press Service