Zatlers will not dissolve parliament

  • 2007-11-05
  • In cooperation with BNS
RIGA -- Latvian President Valdis Zatlers has reiterated that the dissolution of parliament is unnecessary at the moment.

In an interview with Latvia's LNT TV channel, the president said he would consider the dissolution of parliament if there was a political force "outside parliament" that might become an alternative to the ruling parties currently represented in the parliament.

"If I am asked about my powers, there are situations when there are no grounds for that. Firstly, it is clear that there is no alternative. If the parliament is dissolved, there must be a political force that would come with a positive program and show what to do. At this point, there is no such force," Zatlers said.

The president believes that the existing coalition parties must find a political solution to the current crisis.

"The parties represented in the parliament will have to find a political solution... Neither the Social Democrats, nor the New Democrats, nor All For Latvia! can offer an alternative at the moment. Of course, our emotions are strong and we want changes. It means politicians must change in the first place, once the people demands  a new morality in politics. Citizens, too, must change through their engagement," Zatlers noted.

Meanwhile, politicians from some of those parties have been giving their assesment of the Nov. 3 demonstration that saw around 8,000 people gather in the centre of Riga to demand change.

The ruling People's Party parliamentary faction chairman Maris Kucinskis said that, judging by the demonstration, politics in Latvia is in need of changes.

Latvia's First Party and Latvia's Way (LPP/LC) faction head Andris Berzins said the demonstration should be taken seriously and make everybody think, including the government, the parliament, and the opposition.

Berzins believes that the government cannot afford to make any more more mistakes.

Greens and Farmers Union (ZZS) representative Janis Strazdins wanted to praise the people who turned up at the event despite the cold, wet weather.

"It is not entertainment," he said, adding that people had shown that they cared for the future of the country.

Commenting of the unexpected participation of Latvian President Valdis Zatlers, Strazdins said that he was delighted to see that Latvia has a president who is not afraid to participate.

Asked about the work of the government and the parliament, Strazdins said that it is not easy to work in the coalition at present as there is lack of coordinated action, and activities should not be dictated by one party.