The Baltic country of Lithuania has become among the first NATO member countries to formally call Russia's military action in Ukraine a "genocide" while legally declaring the invasion state-sponsored "terrorism."
Its parliament voted unanimously on Tuesday to adopt the motion into law, also calling for future Nuremberg style war crimes trials for top Russian officials - something which most pundits and legal experts agree is likely impossible to practically carry out.
Reuters details that "The motion, co-sponsored by Prime Minister Ingrida Simonyte, said Russian forces' war crimes in Ukraine included the deliberate killing of civilians, mass rape, forcible relocation of Ukrainian citizens to Russia and the destruction of economic infrastructure and cultural sites."
"The Russian Federation, whose military forces deliberately and systematically select civilian targets for bombing, is a state that supports and perpetrates terrorism," the Lithuanian parliamentary motion reads. It follows a prior similar designation by Canada's parliament.
In mid-April, President Joe Biden raised eyebrows in calling Russia's invasion a "genocide" for the first time. It was met with some controversy among analysts in the United States given that the United Nations' definition for formal application of the term has strict requirements and typically isn't thrown around loosely.
A Russian parliament official was the first to respond to the Lithuanian action, explaining that the Baltic state is merely obediently following Washington's lead:
Leonid Slutsky, head of the International Affairs Committee of Russia's lower house of parliament, said the resolution was not legally binding and that it merely repeated what he called the United States' Russophobic views.
He said the resolution was part of an "anti-Russia project" and biased actions against Russia that "have nothing to do with reality," the TASS news agency cited him as saying.
A month ago Ukraine's President Zelensky spoke virtually to Lithuanian parliament, which is in the capital of Vilnius, and declared that the country had been the "first" in Europe to come to Ukraine's aid.
“Dear Lithuanians, I am grateful to address you on behalf of the Ukrainian people today. You have been among the first to come to Ukraine’s aid. You remain among those who care most about peace and security in Europe,” he told the lawmakers. His message to various bodies of friendly countries' lawmakers worldwide has focused heavily on allegations of Russian war crimes, claiming also that Russian forces actively target Ukrainian civilians - a charge the Kremlin has consistently denied.
You can read this article as it originally appears at Zero Hedge here.
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