PES: Parties in Latvia should be able to campaign equally for the election


Nils Ushakovs, Sergei Stanishev

The Party of European Socialists strongly condemns the harmful interference of a government official in Latvia in the election campaign of our member party SPD Concord.

This week the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Latvia, Mr Edgars Rinkevics threatened candidate for Prime Minister from SPD Concord Vjačeslavs Dombrovskis that politicians of SPD Concord who will participate in the meeting of party leader, Nils Ushakovs with supporters in Berlin, Germany, may be arrested. It was scandalously misleading to hinder meeting with voters.The meeting was part of the election campaign of the Latvian Social-democrats planned in many European cities in the eve of the election and was coordinated with the German authorities.

“It is unacceptable for a minister in the current government to threaten with arrests candidates during the campaign. This resembles abuse of power and is an act against the democratic principles. Every citizen of a European country has the right to vote from abroad and the parties are allowed to campaign in accordance to the respective laws. As a member of the PES, SPD Concord has our full support in this matter. We will follow closely the situation for further violations in the campaign.”

The PES notes, that the Berlin election meeting in questioned went in success, which proves that the threats were aiming only to disrupt SPD Concord campaign and to try to undermine the results of the party, which is currently leading in the polls.