Press release, 7 August 2012
Mrs Irena Degutienė, Speaker of the Seimas, welcomed the participants in and guests at the 14th Seimas of the Lithuanian World Community and highlighted that she was particularly pleased to greet such a great number of representatives of Lithuanians from around the world meeting in Lithuania to address issues of paramount importance to the communities and the nation at large.
Mrs Degutienė observed that this time quite a large delegation came from the neighbouring country Russia. When we speak of Lithuanians living abroad, we often refer only to the ones living in the West. This large delegation from Russia, however, reminds us of the times when lots of Lithuanians were forced to emigrate to the West and when many people were deported to the East, Siberia. Greetings to you all who have survived and who have been cherishing and continuing the hallowed traditions of your parents and grandparents, Mrs Degutienė said.
In the opinion of the Speaker, the Lithuanian World Community since its establishment had carried out a lot of work of great importance and significance to Lithuania. We, who lived in the occupied Lithuania and the Lithuania of the revival years, really needed your assistance and your voice which were like a heart balm. There was no dividing line between we and you in those times, because we all were we. Today we must bring back this attitude to mutual communication: there is only we world Lithuanians wherever we may live, said Mrs Degutienė.
The Speaker of the Seimas emphasised her belief that joint efforts would allow Lithuanians throughout the world to return to their motherland. Mrs Degutienė also encouraged the Lithuanian World Community to involve more young people in its activities and expressed her gratitude to the outgoing Chairwoman of the Board of the Lithuanian World Community, Regina Narušienė*, for her work in the interest of Lithuania.
The Seimas of the Lithuanian World Community (LWC) is convened every three years. It is the key event in the activities of the Community. The LWC Seimas deals with all the LWC matters, elects the Board of the Lithuanian World Community, the Control Commission and the Court of Honour.
Secretariat of the Speaker of the Seimas
Juozas Ruzgys, Adviser to the Speaker of the Seimas, tel: +370 5 2396023; +370 698 42073
*On 11 August 2012 Danguolė Navickienė (USA) was elected as new Chairwoman of the Board of the Lithuanian World Community