Home » Latvia .. Pro-Western victory over pro-Russian legislative elections

Latvia .. Pro-Western victory over pro-Russian legislative elections

by archyde

Riga – AFP

The Center Party of outgoing Prime Minister Krysianis Karins won the legislative elections in Latvia on Saturday, according to partial results that include 96 percent of the polling stations, while parties close to the Russian minority fell.

Karen’s “New Unity” party led the results with 18.94 percent of the vote, while only one party, the pro-Russian “Stability”, crossed the 5 percent eligibility threshold, with 6.75 percent, while the historic Russian-speaking formation, the Harmony Party, found (Harmony), once powerful, himself is outside Parliament as the openly pro-Kremlin Union of Russians in Latvia.

The Greens and Peasants Party (the center and the Social Democrats) came in second place with 12.66 percent, followed by the “Unified List” (the Greens and local parties, 10.98 percent), the National Alliance (the center-right, 9.31 percent) and then “Stability” (populist, 6.75 percent). percent).

Another populist party, Latvia First, the Progressives (a social democratic left) and the Development/For party are also expected to occupy a few of the 100 seats in parliament.

The results of the vote boost Karenz’s chances of being commissioned by Latvian President Igels Levits to form a new government when the new parliament begins work in early November in the Baltic country of 1.8 million people, which is a member of the European Union and NATO.

joint program and coalition

Karins told the official Latvian news agency LITTA that President Levits had invited representatives of the parties entering parliament to a meeting on Monday, 3 October.

He explained that talks to form a coalition will focus primarily on a common program, and then, when determining the composition of the coalition, on the distribution of ministerial portfolios.

Without waiting for the final official results to be announced, he revealed some indications of his intentions.

“The new unit will not enter into a coalition with the parties looking for their political orientation in Russia, and we will not cooperate with the Greens and Peasants Party,” he told LTV1 public television. There are other options open.

Previously, he considered that the possible participation of the greens and peasants in his coalition would be possible only if this party broke with his ally, the wealthy and close Kremlin and the mayor of Ventspils Evars Limbergs, declaring that it would be impossible for him to cooperate with someone who opposes cooperation with NATO and is accused of serious misdemeanours. .

Regarding the Russian threat, Karins declared: “Neither I, nor my government, nor my country will respond out of fear. We will continue to invest in our defense as a NATO member.”

“Harmony” retreat

On the other hand, the results confirmed the decline of the Harmony Party, which is supported by Russian speakers, who make up about 30 percent of the population. After he issued the results of the legislative elections a decade ago without finding an ally to rule, and after he obtained close to twenty percent of the vote in 2018, he faced a gradual decline exacerbated by corruption issues that made him lose the municipality of Riga.

The party’s former head and former Riga mayor Neil Ushakov, now a member of the European Parliament, attributed his bloc’s poor result to his condemnation of the Russian offensive in Ukraine.

“Harmony had to choose between acting responsibly or playing with populism with national security and state interests,” he told the official Latvian Letta news agency.

He added, “Some of our voters stayed in their homes, and others joined various new parties representing a different geopolitical orientation.” This situation divided the Russian-speaking electorate.

Before the vote, political expert Markis Krastens said: “The Russian operation in Ukraine helped Karins because, in times like these, people tend to rally around the flag.”

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