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Type of publication: Straipsnis / Article
Author(s): Balkelis, Tomas
Title: Karo pabėgėlių krizė ir etninis konfliktas Lietuvoje 1939–1940 metais
Other Title: War refugees and ethnic conflict in Lithuania during 1939–1940
Is part of: OIKOS: lietuvių migracijos ir diasporos studijos, 2007, nr. 4, p. 38-51
Date: 2007
Abstract: This article examines the relationship between an ethnic conflict and refugeedom in Lithuania at the onset of WWII . It explores competing agendas of the Lithuanian government, international relief organizations, and local refugee institutions. Initially, as war victims in need of help and protection, in the course of time the refugees became increasingly ‘ethnicized’, socially differentiated and isolated as a potential political threat. The process of ‘ethnicization’ led to a competition among different relief agencies over the issues of the administration of relief effort. The official decision to create a legal category of so called ‘aliens’, who forfeited their citizenship and residence rights in Lithuania, further aggravated the crisis by expanding refugees’ numbers to more than 100,000. Different official repressive measures (refugee camps, deportations, forced labor schemes, repatriations) are investigated to explain how the government manipulated the refugee crisis for its own political purposes and how the crisis played into the Polish- Lithuanian conflict. The refugees are presented as active historical agents with their own political and cultural agendas that often competed with the official policies.
Appears in Collections:OIKOS: lietuvių migracijos ir diasporos studijos 2007, nr. 4

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