Latvija in brief - 2011-05-19

  • 2011-05-18

This past March, only 11 percent of Latvian residents were satisfied with the government’s performance, according to the latest DnB Nord barometrs survey, reports In their evaluation, 88 percent said that they are dissatisfied with the job that the government has done so far. Society’s skepticism peaked in February 2009, when 95 percent of respondents were dissatisfied with the government, while 4 percent were content. The survey was carried out from March 11 to March 24, and involved 1,006 respondents in all of Latvia, ages 18 to 74. Most economically-active residents believe that the government will not be able to improve the demographic situation in Latvia, according to another study carried out by TNS Latvia and the LNT television channel. Eighty-nine percent believe that the government will fail to improve the demographic situation in the country. Only 5 percent believe that the government will manage to improve the situation.

On May 13 Saeima Defense, Internal Affairs and Corruption Prevention Committee Chairman Ainars Latkovskis (Unity) met with a delegation of the Swedish Parliament’s Defense Committee and suggested organizing joint Latvian-Swedish military procurements in order to reduce their costs, reports LETA. Latkovskis confirmed that Latvia is interested in participating in the Nordic Battle group, which consists of 2,000 soldiers and is one of the eighteen European Union battle groups. During the ’90s, military cooperation between Latvia and Sweden was close. Unfortunately, when Latvia joined NATO, the cooperation became less active, pointed out Latkovskis. He also emphasized the necessity to improve bilateral Latvian-Swedish and Nordic-Baltic cooperation in defense and within the framework the European Common Security and Defense Policy. During the meeting, the sides also discussed energy and cyber security issues, construction of a liquefied natural gas terminal in Latvia, the Ignalina Nuclear Power Plant project and the importance of renewable energy.

Last week in Rezekne, three boys between the ages of 11 and 12 broke into a house and stole over 30,000 lats (42,800 euros) in cash, reports LETA. Police detained the delinquents the next day, and found a large portion of the money as well as various items the boys had purchased. During an investigation, police found out that the boys initially wished to steal just a video game they had seen through the window of the house. They broke a window and entered the house, proceeding to not only steal the video game, but also the money they found. The boys immediately went on a spending spree, purchasing bicycles, video games, shoes, etc. Two of the boys have had previous run-ins with police. Though the young trouble-makers are not of legal age, they will be held responsible. Their parents will also have to compensate for the losses. A criminal process has been started.