The expected triumph of the right-wing Law and Justice party in Poland's parliamentary elections will likely make relations between Vilnius and Warsaw more tense, particularly on issues pertaining to ethnic minorities, says Professor Šarūnas Liekis of Kaunas Vytautas Magnus University.
Jaroslaw Kaccynski
© AFP/Scanpix

"Talking to them will not be easy," Liekis is quoted bt in comment to BNS on exit poll results on Sunday night.

The conservative Law and Justice party, led by Jaroslaw Kaczynski, is expected to oust the ruling centrist Civic Platform and secure a majority in the Polish parliament.

According to Liekis, the Law and Justice politicians will likely react to any complain coming from Lithuania's Polish-speaking community and the Electoral Action of Poles in Lithuania party in particular, which has organized several protest actions this autumn over education policies.

"Any minor cry or complaint over here will immediately provoke a reaction in Poland, since this party makes much of taking care of Poles abroad and of Polishness in general," Liekis says.

He added that the Law and Justice victory made him "sceptical" about the possibilities for closer cooperation between Poland and Lithuania. Speaking about the character of politicians in Kaczynski's party, he said that they were "more practical, calculating, very ideological and defensive of their interests".

One area where the two countries could step up cooperation, according to Liekis, is defence.

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