President Donald Trump will host a summit with heads of state from Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania at the White House on April 3.
White House Principal Deputy Press Secretary Raj Shah announced the summit between Trump and the leaders during Monday’s afternoon press conference. The President and three leaders will commemorate the 100th anniversary of the nations’ independence and “set the stage for another century of strong ties between our countries.”
During the U.S.-Baltic summit, the leaders will discuss issues including security, business, trade, energy, and cultural partnerships.
“The visit will also highlight baltic states’ achievements since their independence including their economic growth, recent success in meeting NATO’s defense and spending budgets,” said Shah.
The Estonian Salvation Committee signed the “Manifesto to the Peoples of Estonia” on February 24, 1918, declaring independence from the “Russian Tsarist Empire,” according to a committee organized by the Government of the Republic of Estonia to commemorate the centenary.
On November 18, 1918 the “Latvian People’s Council, representing peasant, bourgeois, and socialist groups, proclaimed independence,” according to Encyclopedia Britannica.
In early 2017, the lost 1918 Lithuanian declaration of independence was found in German archives by a Lithuanian professor, according to the Guardian. The country had lost all copies of the document until this one surfaced. It was long believed that three copies had been signed on February 16, 1918 – one for Lithuania, one for Germany, and one for Russia. The country’s ambassador to Germany hailed the find as the rediscovery of Lithuania’s “birth certificate.”
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