In the vote, Mayor Visvaldas Matijošaitis’ initiative was supported by 25 councillors, seven voted against it and another seven abstained.

Following the Council’s decision, the municipality will launch a formal tender for the monument. A special commission will then evaluate the design proposals and take the final decisions.

The proposal has been viewed as a controversial one also because Brazauskas was first secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Lithuania.

Opposition councillors questioned the need for the monument in Kaunas and called for consulting historians. Some raised the issue of costs, others suggested the idea of having an avenue dedicated to all post-independence former presidents.

Kaunas Mayor Matijošaitis had suggested that a monument to Brazauskas, Lithuania’s first president after the country restored independence, could be erected in the Courtyard of the Historical Presidential Palace in Kaunas.

Brazauskas was president of Lithuania in 1993-1998. He died due to illness in 2010.

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