KGB agents can run for the European Parliament

  • 2006-03-28
  • TBT Staff
A proposal to ban former KGB agents from the European Parliament elections was rejected by the legal committee in the Latvian parliament on March 28. The opposition nationalist Fatherland and Freedom (FF/LNNK) party proposed including a provision in the law that would have also banned former staff members of any foreign security, intelligence or counterintelligence agencies.

The party also wanted to include those who had been part of the anti-independence movement or Communist Party after Jan. 13, 1991, the major turning point of the independence movement. All such people are already prohibited from running in Latvian parliamentary elections.
The committee chose not to vote on those proposals and as a result they were all rejected.
Committee chairman Mareks Seglins told BNS that it had already considered arguments made by the parliament's legal office which said the ban on former KGB agents in European Parliament elections wouldn't be legitimate.
The ban for the Latvian parliamentary elections was legal because it could be proved in court that all those individuals had worked against the Latvian parliament. The same could not be said about their work in consideration of the European parliament.
"In Latvia they fought against the state power but we cannot speak of any threat to apply the election ban to the European Parliament," Seglins said.
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