Tomaševski in defense of national minority schools
Member of the European Parliament Valdemar Tomaševski took the floor yesterday night during the parliamentary speeches regarding important political matters. In his speech he publicized the problems of education of national minorities in Lithuania in the context of recent protests and strikes as well as intimidation of parents and students. Below we publish part of his speech.
‘In the face of new problems of immigrants, we should not forget about the rights of autochthonous national minorities in Europe. And one of them is namely the Polish national minority in Lithuania inhabiting these lands for 700 years. Unfortunately, the rights of indigenous Polish and other minorities are notoriously limited. The Law on National Minorities has been cancelled in 2010. And today, the rights of national minorities’ schools are limited by closing them. On 2nd September parents and students defending their rights organized a general strike in which 90% of Polish schools were involved. Unfortunately, instead of discussing problematic matters with the society, the representatives of the Government intimidate the strikers threatening them with fines of 500 euros. The use of communist methods and intimidation of protesting citizens is unacceptable in the European Union. I urge the European Parliament to defend parents and high school students of national minorities’ schools in my homeland. ‘