What is This and What is This for?

It is relevant in many aspects, even in the context of the present agonizing economic threats of the dictator of Belarus.
On 2 September the former Minister of Foreign Affairs of Poland Jacek Czaputowicz (he was holding this …

It is relevant in many aspects, even in the context of the present agonizing economic threats of the dictator of Belarus.
On 2 September the former Minister of Foreign Affairs of Poland Jacek Czaputowicz (he was holding this office from January 2018 to August of the current year) during the interview to told that he managed to bring the relations between Lithuania and Ukraine out of the deep crisis while holding this office. As if he, holding the office of the Minister noticed that persons responsible for foreign policy in the government of Poland were seeing the dynamics of these relations in the other way. There were a lot of different opinions, thus very often he assumed responsibility and was acting according to his own understanding.
We can consider speeches of the politician in different ways; there is no need to believe in them unconditionally, however if we have crises of ‘certain ‘depths, how dynamics of these relations look like?  
At the beginning of September Prime Minister of Ukraine Dmytro Kuleba together with his Polish colleague Zbigniew Rau, who replaced Jacek Czaputowicz, agreed by phone in regard to the date of the meeting on the matters of new economic cooperation between governments of Ukraine and Poland. Ministers also discussed about the upcoming visit of the President of Poland Andrzej Duda to Ukraine at the invitation of the President Volodymyr Zelensky, which might provide the main grounds for strategic guidelines of cooperation when the area of transnational issues do not limit only to economics.   
Let‘s say, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine emphasized and thanked for the agreement in regards to restoration of the burial place of Ukrainian Siege of in 1945 in the south-east of Poland, 19 kilometres from the border of Ukrainian army fighters that were killed during the fight with Soviet NKVD division.
Zbigniew Rau repeated the unchanged support of Warsaw to territorial integrity of Ukraine under the circumstances of aggression of Russia against it and aspiration of Kiev Euro-Atlantic integration and also indicated that Warsaw shall treat these topics as priority when it assumed the Chairmanship of the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe in 2022. Dmytro Kuleba underlined circumstances of all possible cooperation possibilities and importance of grounds that currently are not so favourable (because of coronavirus and not only because of it).  
 
One of them was so-called ‘Lublin Triangle’, the video conference of founding coordinators was also agreed upon during the already mentioned phone call. They decided to establish the ‘Triangle“ on 28 July in Lublin during the meeting of Ministers of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania, Poland and Ukraine after their discussion about security, Ukrainian reforms, actions of Russia in the region, situation in Belarus (then it was before the presidential election). Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania Linas Linkevičius and his colleagues Jacek Czaputowicz and Dmytro Kuleba approved this by signing the declaration. In development of the project regular trilateral meetings are planned and consultations of representatives of Ministries of Foreign Affairs. The closest planned meeting shall be held in Kiev in autumn.  
The prelude to the ‘Lublin Triangle’ is establishment of the corporate Konstantin Ostrogishki brigade LITPOLUKRBRIG of Lithuania, Poland and Ukraine with its headquarts in Lublin. The visit of ministers on 28 July to the headquarters can be treated as a symbolic gesture. It is also symbolic that Konstantin Ostrogishki, the greatest general in the history of the Great Dutchy of Lithuania, who lived in the turn of the 15-16 century and participated in two wars between Russia and Lithuania. In 1497 he was awarded the title of the hetman.
The objective of ‘Lublin Triangle’ is to improve cooperation in security, trilateral military and defence relations making the best use of the potential of NATO and European Union (EU), development of Eastern partnership potential with the EU, reforms of Ukraine and share the acquired experience of Poland and Lithuania. Also, to encourage and most importantly, to improve economic cooperation. According to the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine, the ‘Lublin Triangle“ has potential to become an important factor of development and enhancement not only to the local country but also the region of Central Europe, because the founders see the prospects to incorporate countries that lack closer contacts with European structures to cooperation.     
Firstly, probably they had in mind Moldova and Belarus that are taking part in the eastern partnership program with the EU, however we must admit, quite fragmentarily and with a quite erratic success, especially when we speak about Belarus. On 31  July, before the dramatic post-election events, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine Dmytro Kuleba during the phone call with his Belarussian colleague Vladimir Makei talked about economic relations, energy, the planned visit of the President of Ukraine to Minsk, forum of regions of Ukraine and Belarus that had to be held in Grodno on 8-9 October. Dmytro Kuleba then indicated that his country and Belarus – were not only partners but also friendly neighbours, that Kiev was supporting territorial integrity of Belarus and economic security. The Minister of Foreign Affairs informed his colleague about the initiative of the ‘Lublin Triangle’ and invited to the meeting of Ministers of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania, Poland and Ukraine that will be held in Kiev in autumn as a guest of honour.      
After so-called ‘election’ of the President of Belarus held on 9 August the rhetoric and politics had to be urgently reformed. In the evening of 10 August Ministers of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania, Poland and Ukraine, as co-founders of the ‘Lublin Triangle’ issued a joint statement encouraging the government of Belarus to refrain from using force and release the arrested protestors.
In regard to Belarus, we need and should expect coordination in the format of at least ‘Lublin Triangle’. So far members of the organization are saving Belarussians. In other words, they help in their own way and one at a time. Up to 10 September Poland issued 234 so-called humanitarian visas to Belarussians terrorised by the Alexander Lukashenko regime. Warsaw activated the program ‘Solidarity with Belarus‘, according to which 50 million zloty (around 13.2 million USD) are provided for repressed citizens and independent press.    
Lithuania (same as other Baltic States) and Ukraine also accept Belarussians. Seimas of Lithuania passed a declaration in which it acknowledged that the candidate of opposition Sviatlana Cichanouskąja won the presidential election of Belarus. Lithuania was the first to announce this. Mink, in revenge to this, threatens that it would direct its cargos from Klaipėda, made a search of the car of the ambassador of Belarus who was returning from consultations from Kiev. This situation was described by the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine Pavlo Klimkin as not even an intolerable practice but as a banal criminal offense and called Alexander Lukashenko – a recidivist.
In this dramatic case, we can say that everything is suitable, however efforts of the members of three states as a unanimous and coordinated organization of the ‘Lublin Triangle’ would most probably be more convincing. For instance, seeking a rather unanimous ‘tone ‘in regard to Belarus in Europe.
It is also important that the ‘Lublin Triangle ‘as a geopolitical structure would not just formally exist or simply flounder. Unfortunately, we have precedent cases in the Post-soviet region. In 2016 in Dubrovnik (Croatia) it was announced about the initiative ‘Three Seas’ initiated by Warsaw uniting countries around the Baltic, Adrian and Black Seas, that incorporates Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Poland Check Republic, Slovakia, Slovenia, Bulgaria, Austria, Croatia, Hungary and Romania that was designated for representation of the interests of these countries in the EU, for instance, for reduction of differences among the old and new members of the European Union. The last message about the ‘Three Seas’ was that Bucharest, capital of Romania, welcomed member states of this organization last year. It seems they were talking about establishment of the investment fund. Since then – only silence.  
In October 1997 GUAM was established in Strasbourg that units Ukraine, Moldova, Azerbaijan and Georgia (an organization for democracy and economic development). In 2017 the chair was held by Baku regional organization and after almost ten years of ‘coma‘ it started getting into life and on 27 March of that year Prime Ministers of Ukraine, Moldova and Georgia and Deputy Prime Minister of Azerbaijan participated in the conference held in Kiev. Secretary General of GUAB, a diplomat of Azerbaijan Altai Efendiev indicated that his country was interested in revival of the organization as a cooperation court where regulation of the conflict in the GUAM region could be coordinated.     
If you enter the phrase ‘organization GUAM’ in Google search, you will not find anything about it within the recent years – only a few sporadic most often retrospective links. It would be too bad if the same happens with the ‘Lublin Triangle’.
Arūnas Spraunius

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