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Tuesday 20.08.2019 | Name days: Bernhards, Boriss
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Week in Lithuania. Archaeologists find Great Synagogue of Vilnius' bimah

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Archaeologists have found one of the most important parts of the Great Synagogue of Vilnius, the bimah – a raised central platform for Torah readings, the Jewish Community of Lithuania said on Thursday, July 26.

Installed in the XVIII century, the green-grown baroque-style Bimah was found under a former school which was built by the Soviets on top of the demolished synagogue in the 50s. The two-step baroque-style Bimah had four Tuscany-style and eight Corinthian-style columns, and parts of these columns were also found during the excavation work. Earlier, the archaeologists also uncovered parts of the mikveh, or ritual bath, complex on the northern side of the site. Digging revealed multi-coloured floor tiles and green oven tiles. It is believed to be a male mikveh based on historical documents. The Great Synagogue of Vilnius was one of the most important Jewish centres from the late XVI century until WWII.

Government proposes Brussels to stop changing clocks

Lithuania’s government is proposing Brussels to stop changing the clocks twice a year in the European Union, instead staying on summer time permanently. On Wednesday, July 25, the government backed Lithuania’s position drafted by the Transport Ministry, and Lithuania’s opinion will be communicated to the European Commission carrying out public consultations on the matter. The European Commission launched consultations in response to a call by the governments of Lithuania, Finland and members o the European Parliament to stop shifting time.

Government advises not to go festival in Russia

The Ministries of Foreign Affairs and Science and Education have called on the authorities in the north-western city of Plungė to cancel their plans to send young people to the art festival Novy Mir in Russia. The local mayor says this way young people’s free will and expression possibilities are restricted. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs says it recommended the local municipality last year to halt cooperation with Russia’s Krasnogorsk when an unplanned meeting with members of a Russian motorcycle club, The Night Wolves, openly supporting the Kremlin’s aggressive policy, was organized for Lithuanian schoolchildren.

Parliament speaker accuses Russia

Speaker of the Lithuanian Seimas Viktoras Pranckietis on Monday, July 23, accused Moscow of putting pressure on Lithuanians officials after Russia launched a probe against the judges and prosecutors working on the January 13 case.

Pranckietis believes the investigation in Russia will not have impact on the case in Lithuania. Earlier on Monday, Russia’s Investigative Committee opened cases against Lithuanian judges and prosecutors hearing the January 13 case, based on an article of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation on «knowingly bringing an innocent person to criminal liability». A total of 67 people have been charged with crimes against humanity and war crimes in the January 13th case. Fourteen civilians were killed and hundreds more were wounded when the Soviet troops stormed the TV Tower and the Radio and Television Committee building in Vilnius in the early hours of Jan. 13, 1991.

Vilnius lights Three Crosses monument with Greek flag colours

Vilnius has expressed its support to Greece mourning the victims of devastating fires and has lit the Three Crosses monument with the white and blue colours of the Greek flag. According to Vilnius authorities, visible from many corners of Vilnius, the Three Crosses were to be lit this way until Jul 28 for the duration of mourning.

Vilniaus Prekyba looking for Akropolis’ buyers

Lithuania’s Vilniaus Prekyba, operating the Akropolis shopping malls in Vilnius, Klaipėda and Šiauliai, is reportedly looking for their buyers. But not all three malls might necessarily be sold in one transaction, according to the Verslo Žinios business daily. The fact that the sale of the Akropolis is considered was also confirmed by Vilniaus Prekyba representatives. The Klaipeda and Siauliai malls’ value might exceed 200 million euros, and the Vilnius mall might cost 100–200 million euros.

Klaipeda to commemorate partisan leader Ramanauskas-Vanagas

Authorities in Lithuania’s western port of Klaipeda on Thursday, July 26, decided to commemorate Lithuanian partisan leader Adolfas Ramanauskas-Vanagas in the city. Under a plan, a memorial plaque will be put on the wall of the former Pedagogical Institute of Klaipeda where Ramanauskas-Vanagas studied in 1937-1939. The move was backed by 23 Klaipeda councillors, with one vote against and three abstentions. Ramanauskas-Vanagas lead partisans in the southern region of Dzūkija. Together with other partisan commanders, he signed the Lithuanian Partisans Declaration of February 16, 1949. He was detained in 1956, brutally tortured by the Soviets and executed a year later.

Impeachment proceedings against Russian councillor

The Council of Klaipeda City Municipality on Thursday, July 26, voted in favour of starting impeachment proceedings against Viaceslav Titov, a councillor representing the Russian Alliance, over his statements about Adolfas Ramanauskas-Vanagas, a legendary Lithuanian partisan leader. A total of 22 councillors voted in favour of setting up an impeachment commission, three abstained and there were no votes against. Around a week ago, Titov accused Lithuanian partisan leader Adolfas Ramanauskas-Vanagas over the killings of innocent civilians.

Maxima Grupe gets permission to issue intl bonds

The Central Bank of Ireland has approved the Lithuanian Maxima Grupė’s (Maxima Group) base prospectus, announced on the Dublin Stock Exchange and letting the company issue bonds worth up to 1 billion euros. If the decision is made by the company to start issuing bonds, the first emission would amount to 300-400 million euros. According to Dalius Misiūnas, Maxima Grupė’s board chairman and CEO, the company continues preparations for bond issuance.

Start of NordBalt’s maintenance postponed

The start of the maintenance of the Lithuanian-Swedish Submarine power cable NordBalt has been postponed for more than two weeks. According to information on the NordPool power exchange, maintenance work will be done on Aug.16 – Oct. 28. It was announced earlier that maintenance will be performed from Jul 30 until Oct. 10.

Court rejects Jehovah’s Witness’ complaint over military service

A Vilnius court on Tuesday, July 24, rejected a Jehovah’s Witness’ complaint over mandatory military service. The complainant had asked the Lithuanian army to postpone his conscription and turned to court after it refused.

In his complaint to Vilnius Regional Administrative Court, the man said he could neither be a conscript nor perform alternative military service due to his convictions as it’s not a true civilian service. The court, however, cited a ruling of the Constitution Court, stating that alternative military service is aimed at those who cannot perform military service due to their religious or other convictions. According to the court, it means that a person cannot refuse to perform duties provided for in the Constitution due to their convictions, religion or belief.


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