President Zelensky Visits Lithuania


“We have proved that Russia can be stopped, that deterrence is possible.”

Zelensky and LT President – from Pres website photo by Eitvydas Kinaitis

Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky arrived in Lithuania on January 10, a visit that was not announced in advance due to security concerns. In Vilnius, Zelensky met with Lithuanian President Gitanas Nausėda. After the meeting, the two presidents held a joint press conference. The Ukrainian leader noted that he came to Lithuania for his first visit abroad this year.

“This is not just a visit of gratitude; it is a visit of shared trust between the nations that live in the neighbourhood of Russia,” he said, adding that neither Ukraine nor Lithuania will allow Russia to destroy their statehood.

For his part, Nausėda said that Lithuania has supported and will continue to support Ukraine through all means – military, political, and economic having approved a 200-million-euro package of long-term military assistance to Ukraine, reports “We will send ammunition, generators, and detonation systems to Ukraine in January and M577 armoured personnel carriers in February. We will also train Ukrainian soldiers,” the president added. The two presidents signed a memorandum of cooperation. Later, addressing a large crowd that gathered on Daukanto Square opposite the Presidential Palace, Zelensky focused on Russia’s threat to other countries beyond Ukraine. He urged listeners not to lose hope of victory, even as the large-scale Russian invasion is set to enter its third year. Vilnius residents said his speech was inspiring and reminded some of Lithuania’s own efforts to break away from the Soviet Union. “Glory to Ukraine! Glory to the heroes!” people chanted both before and after Zelensky’s appearance on stage, holding Ukrainian and Lithuanian flags and posters. Students, pensioners, families with children, MPs, mayors, and former heads of state listened to the speeches of the Lithuanian and Ukrainian presidents.

The purpose of Zelensky’s visit was to thank Lithuania for its diplomatic, moral, financial, and military assistance to Ukraine, which is resisting the Russian invasion. He also met with Lithuanian Prime Minister Ingrida Šimonyte, the Seimas speaker, and representatives of political groups.

Zelensky is also travelling to Latvia and Estonia. With the other Baltic leaders he expects to discuss international support for Kyiv and Ukraine’s further integration into the European Union and NATO.

After the Russian invasion the Ukrainian president first visited Lithuania in July 2023 when he attended the NATO summit in Vilnius.