EP deputy Grigule joins right-wing Europe of Freedom and Democracy Group

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Iveta Grigule, newly elected to the European Parliament on the Green and Farmers' Union ticket, announced her decision Wednesday to join the 48 hardline euroskeptics in the group Europe of Freedom and Democracy (EFD).

The parliamentary faction, to be led by Nigel Farage of Great Britain’s populist UK Independence Party (UKIP), supports harsh limits upon the internal migration of labor within the EU, and has been overtly hostile to further integration efforts.  

„I understand Great Britain’s UKIP party position on the untenable flow of immigrants threatening their social system,” Grigule told Latvian Public Radio Thursday. „Imagine the situation in Latvia – if waves of arrivals from third-world countries, refugees and migrants must be supported by our taxpayers. Would we be happy? We wouldn’t be happy. It’s not a matter of kicking them all out. But we’re talking about changing the system, changing the rules of the game,” she explained.

Despite being in line with perhaps 80% of the ideological positions taken by the Greens / European Free Alliance (Greens/EFA) parliamentary group, Grigule was uncomfortable with the overwhelming support for sexual minorities among its members.  Moreover, with narrowly reelected Latvian Russian Union deputy Tatjana Zdanoka remaining part of the EFA group, Grigule claimed her association with the generally reviled former Communist there would clearly damage her reputation in Latvia.   

Regarding the admission of new members, „there are just so many internal problems that first we would need to get the house in order before inviting new guests in,” Grigule explained her reluctance to support further expansion of the EU.

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