Ušakovs made first Latvian member of EP group for LGBTI rights

Former Rīga mayor Nils Ušakovs, now a European Parliament (EP) member, has been made Full Member of EP Intergroup on  LGBTI rights, the group announced on Facebook November 19.

According to the LGBTI Intergroup, with Ušakovs' addition, all 27 Member States are now covered in the group. 

Today, we warmly welcome our first Latvian Full Member (!), 🇱🇻 MEP Nils Ušakovs - Нил Ушаков, elected through...

Posted by European Parliament Intergroup on LGBTI Rights on Thursday, November 19, 2020

Nils Ušakovs was elected from the self-described 'social democratic' party Saskaņa (Harmony). People on social media have been quick to express their confusion regarding such a move, alluding to the rather conservative stance the Harmony party has often taken on LGBTI matters.  

Ušakovs became Rīga mayor July 1, 2009 and held this office for ten years. A charismatic but polarizing leader, he managed to stay in the limelight throughout the years, enjoying unwavering loyalty with Russian speakers. But he was beleaguered on multiple fronts through his third term which started in 2017. Ušakovs was suspended April 5, 2019 by the Environment Minister for perceived non-fulfillment of statutory obligations and violations of regulatory enactments

The Intergroup on LGBTI Rights is an informal forum for Members of the European Parliament who wish to advance and protect the fundamental rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) people. Members of the Intergroup would usually take a positive stance on LGBTI issues when they draft reports or amendments, when they vote in the Parliament, or when they deal with constituency affairs.

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