Anti-Semitic statements not permissible for anyone, let alone MPs – Lithuanian president

  • 2023-06-15
  • BNS/TBT Staff

VILNIUS – Anti-Semitic statements are not permissible for anyone, let alone parliamentarians, President Gitanas Nauseda said on Thursday.

"The president underlines that anti-Semitic statements that are contemptuous of national harmony are not permissible for anyone, let alone members of the Seimas," the president told BNS via his spokesman Ridas Jasiulionis.  

The comment follows MP Remigijus Zemaitaitis' recent Facebook posts accusing Jews of deporting and killing Lithuanians, and expressing anger at Prime Minister Ingrida Simonyte's recent visit to Israel.

In response to Zemaitaitis' posts, the Prosecutor General's Office has launched a pre-trial investigation based on the Criminal Code's article on public contempt and incitement to hatred against any national, racial, ethnic, religious or other group of people.

Faina Kukliansky, chairwoman of the Lithuanian Jewish Community, told BNS on Wednesday that the state must react to Zemaitaitis' statements and take measures to prevent anti-Semitism.

The MP's remarks have been also condemned by Simonyte and Foreign Minister Gabrielius Landsbergis.

Viktorija Cmilyte-Nielsen, speaker of the parliament and leader of the Liberal Movement, called Zemaitaitis' rhetoric polarizing and provocative, and said she would turn to the parliamentary Commission for Ethics and Procedures.