Lietuva in brief - 2006-04-05

  • 2006-04-05
The United Nations has allocated $10,000 for training Lithuanians who work with juvenile delinquents. The U.N. Development Program and the Prosecutor General's Office signed a cooperation agreement under which the Prosecutor General's Office would contribute to a UNDP project, Assistance in Developing an Efficient Juvenile Justice System in Lithuania, and would allocate the said financial assistance for the project. UNDP initiated the project in November last year. During the project, UNDP, the Justice Ministry and other institutions will develop an efficient system to raise the quality of employees working with juvenile delinquents.

Lieutenant Colonel Robert Cerniak, who headed the Polish contingent that has been guarding Baltic air space with their four fighters MiG-29 from December 2005 to the end of March, commented to the Polish news agency PAP that, "We have drawn good feedback from our direct and NATO leadership. Our relations with Lithuanian colleagues were good and we started great cooperation with the local administration." He said Polish pilots carried out about 90 missions during the three months, raised their airplanes in 40 occasions of alarm signals and twice by combat alarm, though Baltic air space was not violated.

One of the four Turkish fighter planes that started a NATO air-policing mission in Lithuania on March 31 will be piloted by a female. She will be the first female pilot in the Baltic states' NATO mission. (A female navigator served in one of Britain's F-3 Tornado airplanes at the end of 2004.) First adviser at the Turkish Embassy in Vilnius, Kemal Kaygisiz, said the F-16 jet would be piloted by First Lieutenant Asli Senol, one of the 45 female pilots in the Turkish Air Force.

Heads of the Varena District Municipality and Polish government representatives have failed to come to an understanding over a monument to Polish soldiers killed in 1919-1923 battles against Lithuanians. Poles are demanding that the monument, which was torn down at a churchyard in Varena last year, be rebuilt. According to the Lietuvos Rytas daily, Varena Mayor Vidas Mikalauskas admitted that the municipality made a mistake by giving permission to tear down the monument, though it was not on the list of cultural heritage objects. "It should have been deliberated with Polish representatives," he said. It was agreed half a year ago that the monument had to be rebuilt at the old cemetery of the town. However, at talks this week in Varena, Mikalauskas proposed to build an Angel's sculpture at the Polish soldiers' graves, but Polish State Secretary Andrzej Przewoznik and Consul General in Vilnius Stanislaw Cygnarowski asked for the same column as the previous one. "The cemetery of soldiers in Varena is protected by international law and therefore the column must be rebuilt as well. We demand to rebuild what was destroyed unlawfully," Przewoznik said.