Parliament to rethink KGB bill

  • 2006-10-18
  • From wire reports
RIGA - Latvia's parliamentary legal committee will again consider a bill that seeks to publicize information within the archives of the former Soviet secret service, the KGB. President Vaira Vike-Freiberga returned the bill to Parliament for revision last week.

Under the legislation, the names and details of 4,500 former KGB agents in Latvia would be released for public scrutiny.
After returning the bill to Parliament, Vike-Freiberga said too many people would be adversely affected by the publishing of such information.

"Publishing information about such people, without any consent of what kind of crimes the person has helped solve, would threaten the immunity of their private life and physical security," she stated.
The possibility of releasing information from old KGB files, which were left behind in Latvia after the Baltic state broke from the Soviet Union in 1991, has been discussed many times in recent years. Some politicians have even argued that the former agents should be exposed.

Although Latvia has now elected a new Parliament, the outgoing government will discuss the matter on Oct. 18 before handing power to the inco-ming representatives (See story Page 1.)
Legal committee chairman Mareks Seglins said the outgoing government would discuss the amendments.
"We will absolutely discuss the legislation in the current Parliament," said Seglins.
He explained that the legal committee would review proposals for the amendments on Oct. 18, and submit them to Parliament for approval within a week.