The Estonian delegation to the PACE draws attention to the fact that 50 years ago today the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe adopted a historic resolution in support of sovereignty of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. It was the first document adopted in the pan-European parliamentary body which unequivocally pointed to the fact that Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania were violently occupied by the Soviet Union.
The resolution adopted on 29 September 1960 is titled “On the situation in the Baltic States on the twentieth anniversary of their forcible incorporation into the Soviet Union”. The document states, among other things, that the annexation took place without any genuine reference to the wishes of the people, expresses sympathy with the sufferings of the Baltic peoples and draws attention to the fact that the independent existence of our states is still recognised de jure by a great majority of the Governments of the nations of the free world. The document also urges member Governments to support appropriate efforts of Estonian, Latvian and Lithuanian refugees to maintain their natural culture and languages.
Later, the Assembly reiterated similar positions in Resolutions adopted in 1963 and 1987. A document adopted in the European Parliament in 1983 also expresses support to Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. In the words of the head of the Estonian delegation to the PACE, Vice-President of the PACE Andres Herkel, the first statement of support, made in 1960, should be valued very highly. “We are highlighting it not only as a historic fact but it also points to the need to pursue the same consistent value-based policy in today’s world and the then members of the national parliaments of Western Europe have to serve as models for us,” stressed the head of the Estonian delegation to the PACE.
The Estonian delegation to the PACE also highlights the role of that-time Danish parliamentarian Ms Marie-Antoinette von Lowzow (1899–1985) in the formulation of the historic statement of support 50 years ago.
Herkel stated that the delegation of the three Baltic states has sent a similar document also to President of the PACE Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu. Members of the Estonian delegation are of the opinion that this issue deserves wider attention and therefore it will also be introduced more extensively in the PACE autumn session beginning next week.
The autumn sitting of the PACE autumn session of 2010 will be held in Strasbourg on 4–8 October and the head of the Estonian delegation Andres Herkel and members Mailis Reps, Silver Meikar and Aleksei Lotman will take part in it.
The Riigikogu Press Service