Coalition talks make little progress

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The New Conservative Party (JKP) and KPV LV have not reached any more clarity regarding the new government model, the LETA newswire reported October 16.

After a meeting Wednesday, JKP leader Janis Bordans and KPV LV's prime minister candidate Aldis Gobzems said talks between potential coalition partners will continue.

Gobzems said that the parties agreed to continue mutual discussions in the upcoming days and first agree on ''program matters''. As an example, Gobzems mentioned the liquidation of the weekly meeting between the coalition, as well as matters related to regional reforms and the administration of the state. The parties will also work closely together on ''content matters''.

Asked whether this means the party has turned down JKP's coalition model offer, Gobzems answered: ''We did not discuss such matters today''.

Bordans also said that JKP wished to discuss the tasks of the new government, and added that such discussions will continue. At the same time, he admitted that the parties have different view on the format of these talks - JKP believes that it would be more effective to discuss these tasks with the politicians responsible for the certain sectors.

The JKP leader once again emphasized that the party will not back down from its principle to exclude both Harmony and the Union of Greens and Farmers from a potential coalition, and reiterated that the party's priorities in the next government will be rule of law and regional matters.

Gobzems, in turn, said that KPV LV will continue its discussions with the other parties voted into parliament.

Neither Bordans nor Gobzems gave a clear answer whether they would be prepared to work in a government model where For Development/For would hold the post of prime minister.

Bordans also confirmed readiness to continue talks with potential government partners.

As reported, the New Conservative Party (JKP) announced last Friday that it would like to form a five-party coalition together with KPV LV, For Development/For, the National Alliance and New Unity, thus leaving the Union of Greens and Farmers - including POrime Minister Māris Kučinskis - and Harmony in the opposition.

JKP also made its proposal on the division of ministerial responsibilities known.

Meanwhile, For Development/For has already stated that it will not accept this government model proposed by JKP.

All six of the so-called "Latvian" parties have previously stated that they do not plan on joining a government with Harmony in it.

JKP went further after the elections, drawing another red-line by stating that it also will not work together with the Union of Greens and Farmers in the next government.

President Vējonis enters the coalition-formation process Thursday, with the first in a series of meetings planned with the seven parties elected to the 13th Saeima. It is his task to formally nominate a Prime Minister to attempt to form a viable government, though as yet he has given no clear indication of who he might choose.

However, he has repeatedly said that in key areas such as security and foreign policy, the new government will be expected to continue the current policy direction and this will influence his decision.

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