Chaos in Lithuania

Fifteen years ago today, Soviet troops confronted massive protests when they moved to suppress a growing independence movement in Lithuania's capital, Vilnius.

VILNIUS, Lithuania — Lithuanians face Soviet tanks, 1991. © Gueorgui Pinkhassov / Magnum Photos

VILNIUS, Lithuania — Defying curfew, Lithuanians guard their parliament building day and night with barricades constructed by the crowd. Inside, Chairman of the Supreme Council of Lithuania Vytautas Landsbergis consults with other politicians and tries in vain to contact Mikhail Gorbachev, 1991. © Gueorgui Pinkhassov / Magnum Photos

VILNIUS, Lithuania — Gas masks are distributed to young Lithuanians defending the Supreme Council against a possible attack, 1991. © Abbas / Magnum Photos

VILNIUS, Lithuania — Lithuanians face Soviet tanks, 1991. © Abbas / Magnum Photos

VILNIUS, Lithuania — Peaceful demonstrators, including women and children, face off with tanks firing deafening blank shots and troops firing tear gas and live ammunition, 1991. At least 13 people were killed, and more than 140 were wounded. © Gueorgui Pinkhassov / Magnum Photos

VILNIUS, Lithuania — The Soviet intervention, 1991. © Gueorgui Pinkhassov / Magnum Photos

VILNIUS, Lithuania — Food is distributed to Lithuanians protecting their parliament, 1991. © Gueorgui Pinkhassov / Magnum Photos

VILNIUS, Lithuania — A Soviet paratrooper guarding the TV tower watches Lithuanians, 1991. © Abbas / Magnum Photos © Gueorgui Pinkhassov / Magnum Photos

VILNIUS, Lithuania — The Soviet intervention, 1991. © Gueorgui Pinkhassov / Magnum Photos

VILNIUS, Lithuania — Victims of the Soviet intervention, 1991. © Gueorgui Pinkhassov / Magnum Photos

VILNIUS, Lithuania — Photographs outside the parliament building memorialize those killed by the Soviet military during the clampdown of Jan. 13, 1991. © Chris Steele-Perkins / Magnum Photos

VILNIUS, Lithuania — The body of a young Lithuanian man killed by Soviet troops, 1991. © Abbas / Magnum Photos

VILNIUS, Lithuania — Funerals for the victims killed during the Soviet intervention, 1991. © Gueorgui Pinkhassov / Magnum Photos

VILNIUS, Lithuania — Victims are taken to a cathedral for Mass before burial, 1991. © Abbas / Magnum Photos

VILNIUS, Lithuania — The Lithuanian flag, 1991. © Gueorgui Pinkhassov / Magnum Photos

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