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Most MPs from Unity faction to reject Vejonis' citizenship initiative; ''quartet'' to vote for
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    Most MPs from Unity faction to reject Vejonis' citizenship initiative; ''quartet'' to vote for

    RIGA, Sept 20 (LETA) - Most of the Saeima members representing the Unity faction will not support President Raimonds Vejonis’ proposal to stop registering newborns as non-citizens, but the four members of the Unity faction who now represent the Movement For party are going to vote for sending the bill to the relevant Saeima committees.

    Solvita Aboltina, chairwoman of the Unity faction, said that out of the 22 Unity lawmakers two will not be present at the Saeima sitting, 16 will vote against or abstain, and the “quartet” – Lolita Cigane, Andrejs Judins, Aleksejs Loskutovs and Ints Dalderis – will support the president’s initiative.

    The “quartet” said they are unable to change their stance on the issue. The leaders of the two parties - Arvils Aseradens (Unity) and Daniels Pavluts (For) - are now holding negotiations on further cooperation with these lawmakers. For the time being, there are now plans to expel them from the Unity faction.

    Aboltina noted, however, that the “quartet” once pledged their support to the Prime Minister Maris Kucinskis-led (Greens/Farmers) government and the upcoming vote on the president’s citizenship initiative is a matter of compliance with the coalition agreement.

    As reported, Saeima is due to decide this Thursday whether to send the president’s legislative proposal to committees. The Saeima Legal Affairs Committee would be the parliamentary committee in charge of the legislative initiative.

    As reported, President Vejonis has proposed to allow children of Latvia's non-citizens to become Latvian citizens at birth, unless their parents choose to give them the citizenship of some other country. He said the time had come in Latvia to cease assigning non-citizen status to non-citizens' offspring. Vejonis believes the move would help develop the Latvian nation as a consolidated society, based on common values.

    As reported, the president’s initiative has caused divisions in the government coalition. The National Alliance has said it would not back Vejonis’ proposal, noting that the coalition has to reach a consensus before pushing ahead with initiatives concerning matters like citizenship. Considering the National Alliance’s stance, coalition partners said they too would not support the president’s proposal.

    The MPs that have left Unity party and now represent Movement For have endorsed Vejonis’ initiative. Vejonis’ proposal has also won the support of opposition parties.

    • Published: 20.09.2017 16:06
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