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Armed Forces and Public Unity Day

Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=POPOHaSqkBc

 

This year the main annual celebration of the Lithuanian Armed Forces, Partisan Honouring, Military and Public Unity Day, will be held on May 20 in Panevėžys.

 

“A strong armed forces is the security guarantee for the state, however, it can not be imagined without the support of society. The same way a soldier is proud of the motherland, the community should be proud of every soldier in service,” Minister of National Defence Raimundas Karoblis says.

 

On May 20 the Lithuanian Armed Forces will present to the society the Lithuanian Land Force, National Defence Volunteer Force, Air Force, Navy and the Special Operations Forces in the area near Cido Arena in Panevėžys. They will be joined by soldiers of the NATO enhanced Forward Presence Battalion deployed in Lithuania and rotational U.S. troops with their weaponry and equipment. Participants of the celebration are expected to be greeted with a flypast by the Fightin Falcon F-16s of the Polish Air Force Detachment currently providing NATO Air Policing in the Baltic skies.

 

 

The audience will be able to view a Leopard main tank, PzH 2000 self-propelled howitzer, Marder and CV90 infantry fighting vehicle, Fennek armoured reconnaissance vehicle, Javelin anti-tank missile system and FN SCAR designated marksman rifles, as well as to try overcoming numerous military style obstacles, completing military assignments, or compete against troops in sports matches.

 

Lovers of history will be invited to watch a re-enactment of an Independence Fights operation performed by Grenadierius historical reconstruction club. The celebration will also include commemoration of the 98th anniversary of freeing the town of Panevėžys from the Bolsheviks.

 

The Lithuanian Armed Forces Honour Guard Company, bands of the Lithuanian Armed Forces services, Big Band of the National Defence Volunteer Force, and choir “Kariūnas” of the General Jonas Žemaitis Military Academy of Lithuania will perform for the audience.

 

 

The Honour Guard Company will also perform together with music band Sindikatas.

 

15min. lt news portal will organise discussions on topical themes, such as “Each citizen is important in national defence”, “Draftees and volunteering”, “Cooperation opportunities between the military and business/academia”, “Ukraine: Things to learn”, etc.

 

The celebration in Panevežys will also involve NGOs collaborating with the Lithuanian Armed Forces.

 

The events paying tribute t Lithuanian partisans will be located in Anykščiai district this year: a foot march “Following the paths of Algimantas guerrilla district” will take place on May 21 to mark the deeds of Lithuanian partisans.

 

Everyone is invited to join the 10 km-long march through the areas where partisans of Šarūnas unit of Algimantas guerrilla district fought, had bunkers and died, including the cemetery where their final resting place is.

 

The march will finish at the Algimantas guerrilla district HQ: a place Antanas Starkus-Montė installed a bunker of impressive size when appointed the commander of the guerrilla district in the summer of 1949.

 

The event will remind everyone of us and honour the partisans and all fighters killed for the freedom of Lithuania at the headquarters of the p[artisans of Aukštaitija. Participants of the march will be able to take part in an honouring ceremony with partisan songs and military lunch.

 

Video: https://youtu.be/m29457a6FnM

 

ARMED FORCES AND PUBLIC UNITY DAY IN PANEVĖŽYs

 

PROGRAM

 

1000hrs Thanksgiving mass for Lithuanian guerrilla and freedom fighters at the Holy Trinity Church in Panevėžys (with attendance on the Lithuanian Air Force Band and Kariūnas choir of the General Jonas Žemaitis Military Academy of Lithuania

 

1100hrs Performance of military marches and music by the Lithuanian Armed Forces Band in the Independence Square of Panevėžys near the Holy Trinity Church.

 

1130hrs The Lithuanian Armed Forces Honour Guard Company and the Lithuanian Armed Forces Band march along the streets of Panevėžys from the Independence Square to Cido Area.

 

1200–1730hrs Celebration of Partisan Honouring, Armed Forces and Public Unity Day in the area near Cido Arena in Panevėžys, military village – displays of weaponry, vehicles, logistical equipment, relay races, military asks, presentation of service in the Armed Forces, military style refreshments.

 

1200hrs opening of the celebration: ceremony of hoisting state and historical flags of the Republic of Lithuania, flypast by the NATO Air Policing fighter aircraft

 

1215hrs Program and gun salutes by the Honour Guard Company, performance by the Lithuanian Air Force Band

 

1230hrs Performance by Vytis band of the General Jonas Žemaitis Military Academy of Lithuania and 15min.lt news portal discussions.

 

1300hrs Performance by the Honour Guard Company and Sindikatas band.

 

1430hrs “Independence fights” program

 

1545hrs Planned flight of the Lithuanian Air Force Eurocopter AS365 Dauphin

 

1630hrs Dynamic display (military operation)

 

1700hrs Performance by the National Defence Volunteer Force Big Band

 

1730hrs End of event.

 

 

 

Participants

 

The Lithuanian Land Force will be represented by units of the Mechanised Infantry Brigade Iron Wolf, specialists of Juozas Vitkus Engineer Battalion, National Defence Volunteer Force. They will be displaying the whole range of infantry weapons: from pistols to Javelin anti-tank missile system, HMMWV (Hummer) and M113 tactical vehicles, chemical decontamination and mine neutralisation equipment.

 

The Lithuanian Grand Duke Gediminas Headquarters Battalion of the Lithuanian Land Force will be represented by the Honour Guard Company which will open the celebration with gun salute and defiling program, the Lithuanian Armed Forces Band will be performing marches in the Independence Square of the town prior to the opening of the event and later parade to the Cido Arena.

 

The Special Operations Forces will disclose to the public eye their equipment: everyone will be able to see their ATV, modern Arctic Cat four wheeler and motorcycle.

 

The audience will also be able to take a closer look at the equipment of the Lithuanian Air Force: Eurocopter AS365 Dauphin helicopter, pilots’ gear and life-saving equipment, catapult chair, also RBS70 air defence system, Stinger missile air defence system and radars of the Air Defence Battalion.

 

Logistical forces – MD Jonas Basanavičius Military Medical Service, Lithuanian Grand Duke Vytenis Main Support Logistic Battalion, Depot Service, Material Resources Department – will provide the display of medical aid posts and medical evacuation vehicle, SISU trucks powerful enough to transport armoured vehicles, ROWPU water purification unit.

 

Combat training in the Lithuanian Armed Forces will be represented by the Lithuanian Armed Forces School, Lithuanian Great Hetman Jonušas Radvila Training Regiment, and General Adolfas Ramanauskas Warfare Training Centre. The Training Regiment can be understood as the main gate a youngster enters to become a true soldier. Sergeants-instructors of the regiment will be available to teach participants of the celebration that each soldier learns during basic military training: from elements of lining up to tactics. Everyone will be able to see the multiple integrated laser engagement system, or MILES , used during exercises to mark “killed” soldiers. The General Jonas Žemaitis Military Academy of Lithuania will present the profession of officer, and cadets of land, navy and air forces – the whole trip of four years one needs to take until the rank of lieutenant. The audience will be invited to challenge a cadet.

 

The audience will also be able to talk to NATO soldiers and view their equipment , weaponry and gear. Soldiers of the NATO enhanced Forward Presence Battalion Battlegroup from Germany, Belgium, Luxembourg and the Netherlands have been deployed in Lithuania since the beginning of the year.

 

Partisan Honouring, Armed Forces and Public Unity Day

 

The traditions of Partisan Honouring, Armed Forces and Public Unity Day stems from Armed Forces and Society Familiarity Day celebrated during interwar. The festival was first held in 1935, third Sunday of the month. It was celebrated until 1938 and was then replaced by Weapons Fund Campaign, i.e. raising funds for the Armed Forces, taking place round the year.

 

In interwar the main part of the celebration used to take place in the interim capital, Kaunas: sermons in holy masses would be occasion-themed around, festive parades would march down main streets of Kaunas, soldiers would give performances, military equipment used to be displayed, people were allowed to try out weaponry and try “soldier’s porridge”.

 

In 1993 Vytautas the Great War Museum and Head of the then Sports and Culture Division of the Ministry of National Defence Leiba Ritvas put forth the idea of resuming the tradition. The first Military and Public Day was held that same year, later the celebration was renamed into the Partisan Honouring, Armed Forces and Public Unity Day.

For years the celebration was held in Vilnius, a tradition which lately is turning into a new one: to represent the Lithuanian Armed Forces across all regions of Lithuania. In 2009 and 2011 the celebration was held in Kaunas, in 2012 – in Šiauliai, in 2013 - in Klaipėda, and in 2015 - in Marijampolė.

 

Constantly updated information about the event: www.kam.lt ( http://bit.ly/2pncQOk) and on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/kariuomene/?fref=ts.

 

Photos: Partisan Honouring, Armed Forces and Public Unity Day in Vilnius by the White Bridge in 2016.

 

Credit: Ieva Budzeikaitė

 

Updated on: 2017.05.15
Solution: Fresh Media