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St. George Ribbon display deemed inflammatory

May 08, 2014
From wire reports, VILNIUS

Loreta Grauziniene, speaker of the Lithuanian Seimas, has assessed the widely discussed use of the Ribbon of Saint George, a symbol of the Russian army, with reserve, reports ELTA. According to her, in a democratic country it cannot be banned; however, it should be eliminated from public sight.

"Such things cannot be used and escalated on public transport. Owners of companies and heads of municipalities should be held accountable. It is one of the things which polarizes the public. As regards the ribbons, as far as people from the Parliament and I attempted to establish, it has been used by war veterans during celebrations for several years. However, taking into account the context of the current events in Ukraine, its use should be treated with greater response," Grauziniene told radio station Ziniu Radijas on Wednesday, May 7.

According to the Seimas speaker, every person may choose whether to wear the symbol or not, but its meaning has to be understood.

"We live in a democratic country but when [the ribbon] is being broadly advertised it becomes a political event. I do not propose to prohibit them, but heads of municipalities or politicians should explain to the people that it is not recommended in today's geopolitical context," said Grauziniene.

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