Lithuania's government has expressed formal protest over attempts in Russia rehabilitate the Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact, a 1939 German-Soviet agreement that precipitated World War Two and the occupation of Baltic states.
The country's Foreign Ministry summoned a representative of the Russian Embassy in Vilnius to express concern over the bill in the Russian parliament, Duma, seeking to recall a 1989 condemnation of the Pact.
The 1939 Soviet–German non-aggression treaty, also known as the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact after the two countries' representatives who signed it, contained secret protocols in which they divided Eastern Europe into their spheres of influence. A week after signing the treaty, Germany invaded Poland, starting World War Two. The Soviet Union subsequently occupied eastern Poland and the Baltic states.
In 1989, the Congress of People's Deputies of the Soviet Union adopted a resolution on “the political and legal assessment” of the Ribbentrop–Molotov Pact to condemn the document and declare it null and void.
However, Russian MPs have recently drafted legislation that would annul the condemnation.
Lithuanian Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs Dalius Čekuolis told the Russian Embassy representative that attempts to rehabilitate the agreement between Nazi Germany and the USSR had been condemned numerous times by the international community and Russia itself.
He also said he hoped that the Duma will have enough wisdom to reject the bill which, according to Čekuolis, would push Russia back to the totalitarian past.