Law on desovietization of public spaces enters into force in Lithuania

  • 2023-05-02
  • BNS/TBT Staff

VILNIUS - A ban on the propagation of totalitarian and authoritarian regimes and their ideologies came into force in Lithuania on May 1, making it possible to remove the symbols of totalitarianism and authoritarianism, including monuments and the names of streets, squares and other public objects.

According to Asta Aranauskiene of the Genocide and Resistance Research Center of Lithuania, local municipalities are given 20 working days from the entry of this law to provide the center with information on public objects within their territories that potentially violate this ban.

The Lithuanian Seimas adopted this law in December. According to the law, this ban will apply to any form of commemoration or representation of persons, symbols and information promoting totalitarian or authoritarian regimes and their ideologies.

The GRRCL and local municipalities will have powers to deem public objects as propagating totalitarian or authoritarian regimes and their ideologies. Before that, an inter-institutional commission of nine members delegated from various institutions and organizations will have to submit its assessment to the Seimas. The makeup of this commission will have to be approved by the Seimas on the recommendation of the GRRCL.

Having received the commission's conclusions, the center's director general will no more than five working days to make a decision on a public object, and decision to remove such objects will have to be implemented within three months at the latest.