bnn.lv Latviski   bnn-news.com English   bnn-news.ru По-русски
Saturday 28.03.2015 | Name days: Ginta, Gunda, Gunta

Opinion: unfathomable how UGF could nominate Lembergs as its Prime Minister candidate

FaceBook
Twitter
Draugiem
print
(+1 of 1)

Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RU‘An experienced Latvian politician and mayor of a large city speaks of our choice to join the European Union and NATO as though one of Kremlin’s ideologists, outcompeting even Putin’s partner party Harmony Centre’s politicians in his statements,’ – said MEP and Chairman of For Fatherland and Freedom/ LNNK party Roberts Zīle in his interview to BNN in regard to Aivars Lembergs recent statements about NATO’s role in the defence of the Baltic region.

‘I have been working in politics for 25 years. I believe Latvia’s admission into NATO and EU are also a result of my work. So I feel rather disappointed to hear such things,’ – as the politician expresses his disappointment about the recent statements of the Ventspils politician.

BNN had previously reported that Aivars Lembergs’ friendly attitude towards Russia, including his announcement that the only ones who would benefit from the deployment of NATO troops in Latvia would be the prostitutes, has been noted by Russian media.

With that Lembergs managed to ‘express his views’ on Russian television.

According to what Lembergs told the Russian channel, some American soldier could launch a rocket towards Moscow, and this can be done without Latvian government knowing about it, because Americans are the ones order around NATO. As a result, the counter-strike may fall on Latvia. ‘We all know how Americans behaved in Japan, Iraq, Vietnam and many other corners of the world. Latvia has a treaty with USA that states that American soldiers are to be stand trial in USA for any offences they perform in Latvia. This is why I believe it is very dangerous to have foreign military forces present in Latvia,’ – says Lembergs.

It is not the only criticism Lembergs mentions in his interview to Russian media in regard to NATO: ‘Who occupied Gibraltar? NATO member state UK. Who occupied Cyprus? NATO member state Turkey. With that, looking at Europe’s practice in this, NATO member states present the highest threat level.’

Lembergs words have caused concerned talks in Latvia. Deputies of the ruling coalition in Latvia are also baffled by his opinion. They await explanations from the Union of Greens and Farmers as to the thoughts behind their decision to nominate this person as the party’s Prime Minister candidate numerous times.

‘It is unfathomable how the Union of Greens and Farmers could propose a person with such views as a possible candidate for the post of Prime Minister of Latvia. We can only imagine Latvia’s fate if he had become Prime Minister at some point,’ – says Zīle.

He believes UGF should decide whether they, as the political party responsible for Defence Ministry and Latvia’s ties to NATO, represent Latvia as a country tied to Western values or a country turned towards Kremlin’s Eurasian Union ideology.

‘These two political vectors cannot meet. This is why we expect this political party to provide a clear opinion and make a political choice – either such statements are acceptable for them or they are not. If UGF remains silent, then there is a high probability that this party may form a coalition with Harmony Centre or any other pro-Kremlin party that may end up in the Saeima after the elections. This scenario is very dangerous, because it may lead to Latvia’s exit from NATO and notable increase of Russia’s influence,‘ – believes Zīle.

Both Zīle and Reform Party’s deputy Sandra Sondore-Kukule believe Lembergs’ statements are completely unacceptable.

Sondore-Kukule notes that UGF should present a clear position on actions of its partners.

‘I was more surprised not by the absurdity of Mr Lembergs’ words, but by the fact that he seems to actually believe in what he says,’ – said the deputy.

She adds unlike many other countries in the world, there is freedom of speech in Latvia. And the freedom of speech is among the values defended by NATO and European Union. ‘I hope Mr Lembergs can appreciate that.’

Unity’s representative, member of the European Parliament’s Foreign Affairs Committee Inese Vaidere told BNN in an interview that Lembergs’ statements came as surprising and equally absurd to her.

‘NATO is the only guarantee of Latvia’s security at the moment. Mr Lembergs might not have noticed what is currently going on in Ukraine and what happened in Moldova and Georgia after Russia’s attempts to create the Eurasian Union or even restore the Soviet Union, hoping to include these countries in it,’ – said Vaidere. At the same time, the MEP said Lembergs does not have the kind of influence to pose an actual threat to Latvia’s security.

Lembergs’ loyalty towards Russia was demonstrated by him several times. He had mentioned once: ‘I know only Russian language. I often tell my son: if you want to do business, you don’t have to know any foreign languages, but you absolutely must know Russian language.’ During the recent event in Ukraine, Lembergs had said it a number of times that Latvia should keep quiet and not try to ‘teach Russia how to live’. One of his latest comments implied the introduction of NATO forces in Latvia would mean a military occupation, similar to the one Latvia suffered in 1940.

Public figures express deep concern over the fact that Kremlin’s main television channel shows how the most popular politician of the Union of Greens and Farmers – Lembergs – openly says NATO is a threat to Europe and Russia. They add that Lembergs’ party For Latvia and Ventspils should be expelled from UGF.

Lembergs’ opinion has not gone unnoticed in Latvia. Social networks are filled with a furious storm over this kind of opinion. High-rank Latvian officials express their thoughts on this as well. Former Latvian Defence Minister Artis Pabriks condemned Lembergs’ statements on his Twitter page; rhetorically asking if anyone in Ventspils would like to follow the example set up by Donetsk – request independence and join Russia.

Latvia’s current Defence Minister Raimonds Vejonis distances himself from the matter, referencing his previous decision not to dwell on such statements. In spite of this, he continues to receive angry comments from society. According to the people, such a position of a minister sounds more like ‘I don’t care’ or ‘leave me alone’.

Ref: 102/103.109.109.2843


Leave a reply

  1. mike walsh says:

    “She adds unlike many other countries in the world, there is freedom of speech in Latvia. And the freedom of speech is among the values defended by NATO and European Union. ‘I hope Mr Lembergs can appreciate that.’… the irony is that she is indignant and critical of his free speech.

    Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  2. Ilmars says:

    The solution is simple. Kick all the UFG Ministers out of the current government, and dont vote for them at the coming election.
    A vote for the Union of Farmers and Greens (UFG) is a vote for Putin.

    Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

Number of cancer patients in Latvia up by 39%

While cancer treatment technologies continue developing in Europe, the number of cancer patients in Latvia continues increasing.

Multiple airlines institute rules to have two people in cockpits at all times

Latvian national air Baltic airline currently performs the necessary activities to institute new rules for pilots. In particular, new rules are aimed to make sure that if one of the pilots has to leave the cockpit for one reason or another, one of the crew members will have to enter the cockpit and remain there until the pilot has returned.

Delna: a weak CPCB leader negatively impacts state security

Yaroslav Strelchenok is not suitable to lead Latvia’s Corruption Prevention and Combating Bureau, according to Delna Society for Openness. It is a matter of ethics, strategic view, ability to make decisions and take responsibility, leading skills, motivation of workers and development.

Rinkevics: Latvia strongly supports Moldova’s reforms and relations with EU

«Latvia will continue supporting Moldova’s reform process, progress of realization of development projects for regional, municipal, communications, marine transport and education development. Latvia will also share its experience in the EU,» – said Latvian Foreign Minister during his visit to Moldova.

Riga airport to welcome summer season with new airlines and destinations

SAS airline is set to return to Latvia this Sunday, March 29th. Ukraine International Airlines and Swiss International Air Lines will also begin working at Riga International Airport this year. Latvian national airBaltic airline will make passengers happy with multiple new destinations to explore.

Sparitis: presidential election scenarios have been decided behind the scenes

Head of Latvian Academy of Sciences Ojars Sparitis believes talks about the next President of Latvia are necessary on one hand. On the other hand, however, it is possible that scenarios for the election of the next president have already been decided behind the scenes, as reported by lsm.lv.

Opinion: Economy Minister – a girl with Lembergs’ platform

«Up until now politicians led by others from behind the scenes have largely remained within one of two categories – largest cretins and drivers’ sons. Economy Minister Dana Reizniece-Ozola has presented herself as a wonderful example of a completely new category,» – notes journalist Aivars Ozolins.

Bondars discusses security of the Baltic region in USA

«It is very important for Latvia to learn the opinion of its allies on different levels. Only by maintaining personal contacts it is possible to accomplish the maximum cooperation potential. Our allies should be able to clearly see our position so that there are no doubts about our readiness to act cooperatively,» – believes Latvian Regional Alliance’s presidential candidate Martins Bondars.

Germanwings catastrophe: co-pilot wanted to ‘destroy plane’

According to recordings from the recently discovered black box of the crashed Germanwings passenger aircraft, the co-pilot wanted to destroy the plane, as noted by French authorities.

Construction costs up by 1.8% in Latvia

Compared to January, construction cost level grew by 0.1% in Latvia in February 2015.

Snow to return to Latvia next week

Active cyclones will dictate weather in Latvia at the end of March and beginning of April – precipitation is expected to come every day. In addition, precipitation may be especially intense during some days. Cold masses of air will be carried to Latvia, and there is a high probability of snow.

Multi-millionaire Lithuanian MEP turns into a cry-baby amid prison fears

How to retain cool composure amid the looming jail prospects?

Donations to Aivars Lembergs’ party have reduced more than six times

Last year, Aivars Lembergs’ party For Latvia and Ventspils received EUR 2,236 as donations, which is significantly less than what the party was provided in 2013, when the total amount of donations reached EUR 14,375.

LRA: state budget funding for parties should be reduced for failed pre-election promises

Latvian Regional Alliance categorically opposes amendments to the Political Parties Financing Law that provide for an increase of state budget financing of political parties that received more than 2% of votes during elections.

Micro-enterprises to be allowed to be founded only in certain industries

This Thursday, March 26th, the Saeima amended the Micro-enterprises Tax Law in the second reading. Approved amendments provide a list of industries in which micro-enterprises are allowed to choose to pay micro-enterprise tax.

Baltic and Nordic businessmen are optimistic about Ukraine’s future

Ukraine has a large potential for economic growth, and Ukraine knows how to use it, said the head of the International Monetary Fund in Ukraine Jerome Vacher during the recent Nordic and Baltic business days conference in Kyiv. Representatives of other countries also said that Ukraine is on the right path for developing its business environment.

Term for Strelchenok to submit his work assessment form is extended

Prime Minister Laimdota Straujuma has extended the term for submission of Corruption Prevention and Combating Bureau Chief Yaroslav Strelchenok to submit his work assessment form.

Saeima to continue reviewing amendments to Micro-enterprise Tax Law

This Thursday, March 26th, the Saeima will decide on amendments to the Micro-enterprise Tax Law in the second reading. These amendments are intended to bring changes to this tax rate.

Constitution Protection Bureau ask State Chancellery Director to come over for a talk

This Wednesday, March 25th, Director of Latvian State Chancellery Elita Dreimane received word of postponing of her professional evaluation. The reason for this is because she has been called in to the Constitution Protection Bureau.

Russia plans to stop paying pensions to citizens living abroad

Russian State Duma has developed a draft that provides for a halt of paying of pensions to Russian citizens living abroad, as stated by Russian State Duma deputy Mikhail Degtyarev in an interview to Izvestia.

PHOTO: Latvia commemorates Siberia deportees

This Wednesday, March 25th, Latvia commemorated victims of deportations and Communist genocide of March 25, 1949. Commemorative events were held at Skirotava station and Freedom Monument in Riga.

China experiences smallest GDP increase in the last 24 years

Eight out of ten Chinese companies had experienced significant payment delays in 2014, according to data compiled by Coface credit insurer.

Experts explain that ECB’s ‘money printing’ will affect Baltics

In Eurozone, central banks of Baltic States take part in the European Central Bank’s latest ‘money printing’ programme. This includes procuring state bonds and bonds of European international organizations. However, Baltic States do not have a sufficient amount of local bonds for their central banks to procure.

In pictures: Spring menu for latest tablets

The first months of 2015 have been relatively silent, as far as product launches of tablet computers concern. Now, several new gadgets are about to be served on the spring menu.

Pre-orders for new Samsung smartphones now available in Latvia

This week marks the launch of pre-orders for the latest Samsung smartphones – Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge – in Latvian mobile phone operator stores and largest shopping centres in Latvia. Residents can now register a pre-order for these devices in order to acquire them as soon as they become available in the country.