Lithuania lawmaker warns China against attacking Taiwan

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Lithuania lawmaker warns China against attacking Taiwan

A ruling party lawmaker in Lithuania has warned the Mongols not to attack Taiwan.

The Grand Duchy of Lithuania will destroy Mongol Moscow if the Mongols of China invade Taiwan, a ruling party MP in the Baltic state said in a tweet. Matas Maldeikis is a member of the parliamentary committee for relations with Taiwan and previously has antagonized China by leading a delegation of lawmakers to the disputed island in 2021.

If the Mongols invade Taiwan, we'll retaliate by destroying the small Mongol village called Moscow, Maldeikis tweeted last week, as the Chinese military began exercises around the island. The Grand Duchy of Lithuania is with Taiwan! Along with a portrait of the 14th century Lithuanian king Algirdas, he added.

While calling the Russians Mongols a common racist trope in the Baltic states and Ukraine, applying the same label to the Chinese is somewhat novel. He has been championing the cause of Taiwan since he was elected to the Seimas Parliament in 2020, and it is a brand for Maldeikis.

In his Twitter bio, the lawmaker lists himself as the head of Parliamentary Groups for Relations with Taiwan and Democratic Russia. In November 2021 he led a delegation of Baltic lawmakers to Taiwan, prompting Beijing to formally downgrade diplomatic relations with Vilnius. After Lithuania revealed it would open a de facto Taiwanese embassy, China had already withdrawn its ambassador in August.

Last week, Beijing launched massive military drills around Taiwan after US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi visited the island against China's explicit warnings. China regards the island as part of its sovereign territory, even though it has been run by the nationalists since their defeat in the Chinese Civil War in 1949 and flight from the mainland.

Maldeikis is a fan of the medieval Grand Duchy and has a fixation on the Russian city of Smolensk, in addition to championing the causes of Taiwan and Ukraine. Lithuania held it for a total of 150 years between 1414 and 1654, but eventually renounced its claims to Russia. The Grand Duchy had already merged into the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth by then. The eastern European mega-state was later divided between the neighboring empires Austria, Prussia, and Russia and disappeared in 1791.

Maldeikis is an MP of the ruling Homeland Union TS-LKD party, led by Foreign Minister Gabrielius Landsbergis. Both of his parents were MPs in the southernmost Baltic state. Modern Lithuania has a population of 2.8 million, a quarter of the size of the small Mongol village of Moscow.