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NATO fighter aircraft, 14th c. Honour Guard, Lithuanian Armed Forces Band in reconstructed Grand Duchy of Lithuania period uniforms highlighted commemoration of Statehood Day

On July 6 national flag hoisting ceremony was held in Simonas Daukantas’ Square, Vilnius, in commemoration of Coronation of Mindaugas Day: viewers were saluted with a flyover by fighter aircraft currently conducting the NATO Air Policing Mission in the Baltic states, the Honour Guard Company in 14th century uniforms and weaponry gave a memorable performance to the tunes played by the Lithuanian Armed Forces Band dressed in reconstructed uniforms of the Foot Guard Regiment of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania.

 

The performance by the Honour Guard Company was accompanied by the Lithuanian Armed Forces Band playing the National Eurovision Contest winner song “On Fire” by The Roop.

 

The NATO mission is currently conducted by a Spanish Air Force Detachment with six F-18 Hornet fighter aircraft, and augmented by the British Royal Air Force Detachment with three Eurofighter Typhoons. The mission is enhanced from Estonia by the French Air Force Detachment with four Mirage 2000s. There is the total of 13 fighter aircraft currently guarding the Baltic skies.

 

King Mindaugas was the unifier of the Lithuanian people, accepted Western christening and the crown from the Holy See, that way shaping the westward civilizational orientation of Lithuania, which was later consolidated by Vytautas and Jogaila with an overall christening in the end of the 14th century. Lithuania marks three days of state: February 16 and March 11 are the dates on which Lithuania’s statehood was re-established. However, the 6th of July is the basis to claim that our state was established in the 13th century. We have carried on with this tradition of statehood guided by Western values until this day.

 

Photo credits: G. Maksimovicz (MoD)

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