RIGA - Extension of the state of emergency in municipalities bordering with Belarus is a legal solution aimed at preventing and managing hybrid threats, Krisjanis Feldmans, chairman of the Conservatives political group in the Saeima, told LETA.
The lawmaker described the situation at Belarus' border as an "operation of the Kremlin's satellite state". The state of emergency is necessary to enable authorities to take measures in a legally correct way, Feldmans explained.
"Of course, we insist on doing everything in a lawful way," the MP said.
Rihards Kols, chairman of the Saeima Foreign Affairs Committee, said that "nobody has any doubts that Belarus is an accessory of Russia's aggression against Ukraine". Belarus should be regarded as an aggressor just like Russia, taking into consideration also the respective level of threats," Kols said.
Andris Skride, vice-chairman of the Development/For political group in the Saeima, said that since the Ministry of the Interior has called for an extension of the state of emergency in the border areas, the parliament should approve the extension.
Andrejs Judins, vice-chairman of the New Unity political group in the Saeima, said that generally there were no problems with extending the state of emergency but that first it was necessary to see the argumentation and data supporting the measure. The Belarus border needs special attention, and there are people who guard the border, "but it is clear that the problem cannot be resolved with people alone," Judins said.
"It is hard to predict what our neighbors can come up with, we need to be on a special level of preparedness," Judins said.
The Ministry of the Interior will ask the government to extend the state of emergency in the municipalities bordering with Belarus until November 10, according to draft amendments prepared by the ministry.
As reported, taking into account the increased pressure of illegal immigration, the Latvian government in May decided to extend the state of emergency in Ludza, Kraslava and Augsdaugava counties, as well as in Daugavpils until August 10.
Since August 10, 2021, a total of 6,777 people have been prevented from crossing the border illegally, the Ministry of the Interior informed.