Baltic Foreign Ministers In Washington: 'Ukraine Must Win And Russia Must Be Held Accountable"

Baltic Foreign Ministers In Washington: 'Ukraine Must Win And Russia Must Be Held Accountable"

The top diplomats of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania on Monday visited Washington to meet with high-level U.S. officials to express their unity and unwavering support for Ukraine’s victory, as well as their commitment to holding Russia to account for its actions, TURAN's Washington correspondent reports.

The move comes as all three Baltic countries this week mark the 75th anniversary of Soviet mass deportations, during which tens of thousands of innocent people were sent to Siberia, many perished.

"Stalin’s successors in modern Russia conduct genocide in Ukraine. Such crimes must not be forgotten and forgiven," top diplomats told their American counterparts.

"And this memory serves us and makes us better understand what we value today: the security, the safety, the prosperity that we managed to get through the decades, and also looking to the future so that it does not happen again – not in our countries, not in other countries that are fighting for their security and their freedom today, such as Ukraine, and Moldova looking for accession to EU, and Georgia that has been attacked in 2008," Lithuanian Foreign Minister Gabrielius Landsbergis said during a meeting with Secretary of State Antony Blinken.

"We believe that the absolute necessity of Ukraine's victory on Ukraine's terms against a defeated Russia is what will continue to drive us, whatever it takes," he later told reporters at Washington National Press Club.

According to the State Department's readout of the meeting with Blinken, the Baltic ministers affirmed the strength of the NATO Alliance and its role in ensuring security and prosperity in Europe, noting in particular the importance of securing NATO’s eastern flank.

"The Secretary also congratulated the three foreign ministers on their upcoming 20th anniversary in the Alliance.  The Secretary and the foreign ministers underlined that the United States, Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania stand united in support of Ukraine as it defends itself against Russia’s aggression and are committed to holding Russia accountable," Spokesperson Matthew Miller said.

Speaking to reporters, Minister Margus Tsahkna of Estonia said that the West needs to figure out how to deter Russia. “Ukraine is fighting for us... We have to define our goal: Ukraine will win the war,” he added.

"Russia is not following the understanding of international law and rules," he emphasized.

Latvia's Foreign Minister Krisjanis Karins echoed his colleagues' sentiments: 'Ukraine must win! We cannot afford a world where Russia is allowed to succeed in Ukraine. Russia must be held accountable," he said.

"Deterrence, long term – a long-term strategy also with dealing with an aggressive Russia, this is what we have to strive towards," Karins concluded. "And it’s only by democracies and likeminded nations and societies working together that we can make the world a safer place."

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