Russian Train Bearing Soviet Symbols Halted in Lithuania


Russian Train Bearing Soviet Symbols Halted in Lithuania

Border guards at Lithuania’s Kybartai railway checkpoint stopped a train from Kaliningrad, Russia, from entering their nation on Monday because it was adorned with Soviet symbols.

Windows in the chartered train were plastered with posters of Soviet symbols, which are illegal in Lithuania. They’re illegal because Lithuania—like the nation of Ukraine—was part of the Soviet Union for decades, and suffered under ussr oppression.

“It was a terrible 50 years for us in Lithuania,” Sara Linkevičiūtė, a resident of Vilnius, told on May 14. “Citizens were deported to Siberia for genocide,” she said, explaining that she and her compatriots would do whatever is necessary to prevent Lithuania from returning to its dark Soviet chapter.

Ukraine is currently being destabilized primarily by a Russian desire to rebuild its old Soviet Empire. And some are worried that Lithuania and other former-Soviet nations of Eastern Europe could be next. This is why the Lithuanian border guards viewed the Soviet symbols on the Russian train warily. After officials removed the posters, the train and over 200 Russian passengers were permitted to leave the Kybartai checkpoint.

Russia’s aggression in Ukraine has Europeans on edge in Lithuania and beyond. The Crimean crisis truly is a global game changer. To understand more about this geopolitical sea change, and what it means for the Lithuanians and other Europeans, check out our exclusive interview from last week with Lithuania’s vice foreign minister.