Baltic PMs mark anniversary of US non-recognition policy

WASHINGTON – The prime ministers of the three Baltic States have sent a letter of gratitude to US President Barack Obama to mark the 70th anniversary of the U.S.’s policy on the non-recognition of the Soviet occupation of the three countries.

“This summer marks 70 years since the three Baltic nation lost their cherished freedom and independence which they managed to restore half a century later. That day would not have come without the principled foreign policy of the United States of America,” said the letter, composed jointly by Estonian PM Andrus Ansip, Latvian PM Valdis Dombrovskis and Lithuanian PM Andrius Kubilius.

The declaration, issued 70 years ago by Sumner Welles, then Acting United States Secretary of State, condemned the annexation of the Baltic States by the Soviet Union and established the 50-year-long U.S. policy of the non-recognition of the Soviet occupation of the Baltic States.

“We, the prime ministers of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, would like to express our gratitude and appreciation to the American people for their courageous and highly moral action and congratulate you, Mr. President, on this anniversary of the successful foreign policy that has made the United States of America a beacon of freedom for all oppressed nations and aspiring democracies,” the letter said.

“On July 23, 1940, the acting Secretary of State Sumner Welles began a long-lasting non-recognition policy of illegal Soviet occupation and annexation which enabled the diplomatic representations of the Baltic States to continue working and gave their people strength and hope to go on campaigning for their freedom,” it said.