Baltic, Polish, Ukrainian presidents sign joint declaration

  • 2021-05-04
  • LETA/BNS/TBT Staff

VILNIUS – The presidents of Lithuania, Poland, Estonia, Latvia and Ukraine signed a declaration of support and cooperation with countries striving for democratic changes as they marked the 230th anniversary of the Constitution of May 3, 1791 on Monday. 

In the document, the presidents "committed to support the development of the region based on fundamental democratic values – freedom of citizens, sovereignty of states, democracy, rule of law, equality, and solidarity principles", the Lithuanian president's office said in a press release. 

"A uniting Europe should remain open to all countries and nations which share the above-mentioned values," the declaration reads.

The leaders reaffirmed their support for the region's states and their citizens in their striving to foster freedom, democracy and human rights. 

"We believe that to all of us the solidarity of nations is one of the cornerstones of peace, stability, development, prosperity and resilience," the joint document says.

Among other things, the declaration underscored the significance of the May 3 Constitution for the states of Poland and Lithuania, their shared history, and bond, according to the press release. 

The leaders also "stressed the extraordinary value of the document in the development of the European political thought as it became the first fundamental law on our continent and the second one worldwide", the president's office said.

"The 3 May Constitution and the following commitments by Lithuania and Poland formed part of European political, social and cultural heritage," it quoted Nauseda as saying. "The Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth demonstrated to Europe a united path that substantially surpassed its times."

The presidents signed the joint declaration in the courtyard of Warsaw' Royal Castle with Jan Matejko's painting depicting the adoption of the May 3 Constitution in the background.

On the occasion of the anniversary, Nauseda and First Lady Diana Nausediene are visiting Poland on Monday. Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki paid a visit to Vilnius on Sunday.

The Constitution of May 3 was the main law of the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth, a dual monarchy of the Kingdom of Poland and the Grand Duchy of Lithuania. 

May 3 is an important national holiday in Poland. In Lithuania, the date is celebrated more modestly as some say that the Constitution reduced the independence of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania in the Commonwealth of the Two Nations.