Działalność polityczna Polaków w odrodzonej Republice Litewskiej
Political activity of Poles in the revived Republic of Lithuania
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The national revival in Lithuania began in 1987/1988. In 1990 Lithuania proclaimed the Declaration of Independence. The process of becoming independent lasted until 1991 when, after so called “Janajew’s putsch”, Lithuania was recognized by the international community. That process involved also the Poles who have inhabited Lithuania for ages and are now a considerable national minority there. According to the 2001 census, 234 989 people declared the Polish nationality, that is 6.7% of the Lithuanian population. The aim of the article is to present the participation of the Poles in the political life of the Republic of Lithuania. At first the Supreme Council was the main parliamentary body in Lithuania, after some time the Parliament replaced it. In 2004 the elections to the European Parliament took place and that is also mentioned in the article. The author considers here the time between 1990 and 2008. The beginning is marked by the symbolic gaining independence by Lithuania. The closing date is the parliamentary elections in fall 2008. The Polish community in Lithuania was at first represented by the Association of Poles in Lithuania (ZPL), and since 1994 by The Electoral Action of Poles in Lithuania (AWPL). The results of the parliamentary elections in Lithuania are analyzed in the article with particular attention paid to votes for the Polish representatives. The documents of the Central Electoral Commission in Lithuania and the Polish press in Lithuania, as well as the author's own observations are the source materials for the article. Some demands of the Polish community presented during the electoral campaign are also discussed in the article.
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