Augustinas Voldemaras and Soviet-Lithuanian Relations in 1926-1929

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The article analyzes the nuances of the changes in Soviet-Lithuanian relations after the coup d'etat staged in December 1926. The coming to power of the leaders of the Lithuanian Nationalist and Republican Union A. Smetona and A. Voldemaras initially contributed to the situation of uncertainty in bilateral relations. Moscow was extremely concerned about Voldemaras' desire to exacerbate the Polish-Soviet contradictions in order to solve the Vilnius problem in Polish-Lithuanian relations. The Soviet diplomats feared that Voldemaras could provoke an armed conflict with Poland and that the Soviet Union would inevitably be involved in the conflict. On the other hand, Soviet diplomacy was interested in maintaining both the independence of Lithuania and the maintenance of some tension between Poland and Lithuania, as this situation created obstacles to Poland’s spread of influence throughout the Baltic East. By the late 1920s, it became apparent to Moscow that dissatisfaction with Voldemaras’ policy in Lithuania had reached its climax and that Voldemaras was to be forced out of Lithuanian political life in the near future. As a result, a few months before Voldemaras’ resignation, the political leadership of the USSR categorically opposed contacts with him by the leadership of the People’s Commissariat for Foreign Affairs.

About the authors

Aleksandr I. Rupasov

St. Petersburg Institute of History of the Russian Academy of Sciences

Author for correspondence.
ORCID iD: 0000-0002-3172-6205

Dr. habil. hist., Leading Researcher, Department of Modern History of Russia

7 Petrozavodskaya St., St. Petersburg, 197110, Russia


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