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LCLC urges Lithuanians to register to vote and support the referendum
May 9, 2019

Organisations that unite Lithuanians all over the world actively supported the referendum for retaining Lithuanian citizenship (after acquiring citizenship of another country), and encouraged Lithuanians living abroad to register to vote. 

Lithuanians living in the UK were the most active – over 20,000 people registered to vote, out of over 60,000 Lithuanians living abroad. By way of comparison, around 19,000 of Lithuanians living abroad registered to vote in the national election for Lithuanian parliament in 2016.

President of the Lithuanian City of London Club (LCLC) Marius Raugalas was pleased to see an increase in activity of Lithuanians living abroad. LCLC acted in partnership with Lithuanian community, programme “Our Time Is Now” run by World Lithuanian Community, Global Lithuanian Leaders and other organisations. All of them were sharing information about the forthcoming elections and organised various discussions on the subject.

“We believe that maintaining Lithuanian citizenship is important to many Lithuanians living abroad, therefore we believe that many of them would vote “Yes” in the referendum”, said Marius. The most difficult task we had was spreading the news about the referendum and helping people to register to vote. Lithuanian City of London Club focused on spreading the message to Lithuanians living in the UK through Facebook advertising, reaching over 100,000 people ahead of the referendum.

Regardless of the efforts of those living abroad, the result of the referendum will depend on the votes of those living in Lithuania. The president of LCLC was concerned that success of the referendum may be influenced by lack of information. The referendum was not announced for a long time, discussions on the subject were limited, there is a lack of information and lack of understanding of the consequences of the referendum.

Marius also pointed to a number of myths and ungrounded fears as well as potentially negative views towards Lithuanians who emigrated from the country. Currently Lithuania is one of only 5 EU countries which do not allow dual citizenship.

Full text of the article (in Lithuanian) is available here: https://www.lrytas.lt/lietuvosdiena/aktualijos/2019/05/09/news/londono-lietuviai-profesionalai-ragina-palaikyti-pilietybes-issaugojima-10289476/