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Wednesday, 1 July 2009

The President: Today we are celebrating the 440th anniversary of the great success of several nations

The Presidents of Poland, Lithuania and Ukraine along with the former Chairman of the Supreme Council of Belarus and the representatives of the Presidents of Latvia and Estonia, as the representatives of the countries that centuries ago formed the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, today in Lublin participated in the commemoration of the 440th anniversary of the Union of Lublin.

After the service the guests headed for the Catholic University of Lublin, where in the main lecture hall, the Presidents of Poland, Lithuania, Ukraine, Latvia and Estonia were awarded Honorary Doctorate degrees from the Catholic University of Lublin.

At the end of the celebration of the 440th anniversary of the Union of Lublin, the President of the Republic of Poland, Lech Kaczyński, the President of the Republic of Lithuania, Valdas Adamkus, and the President of Ukraine, Victor Yushchenko, accepted a joint declaration.

The Presidents emphasised that the Act of the Union of Lublin was, for Europe at that time, a symbol of the co-existence of different religious, social and cultural traditions within one state. The words of Pope John Paul II were also recalled: “From the Union of Lublin to the European Union.” He once remarked that the Union of Lublin played an important role in the history of our continent and he regarded the enlargement of the European Union as a token of “historical justice and, on the other hand, a mark of the enrichment of Europe.”

In the Declaration the Presidents expressed their desire to make the cooperation between Poland, Lithuania and Ukraine pertaining to political, economic, social and cultural matters even closer, especially with regard to European and Euro-Atlantic integration projects. 

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