Four party coalition still desirable, insists Kariņš

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There is no insurmountable obstacle preventing the formation of a four-party coalition consisting of New Unity (JV), the National Alliance (NA), the United List (AS) and the Progressives (P), according to Prime Minister Krišjānis Kariņš.

He was talking on Wednesday after a meeting between his New Unity party and representatives of the Progressives.

Similarly, the leader of the Progressives, Kaspars Briškens, said after the talks that certain elements in Latvia's political agenda are more important than the ideological disagreements between the parties that could form the new coalition. 

The representatives of the Progressives said that during the negotiations Wednesday they managed to find common ground in the issues of energy crisis and security, promotion of economic growth, internal and external security. 

Briškens emphasized that the party would like to be part of the new coalition and is able to offer professional people both for work in the government and for work in the Saeima.

According to "Progressives", the next coalition should be "powerful with an overwhelming majority in the Saeima".

However, the Progressives are also ready to be a "powerful" opposition if they are shut out of government, Briškens warned, saying: "Let's not try to be in the coalition at any cost."

The leader of the Progressives admitted that his party will likely have more difficult negotiations with the United List and the National Alliance, which are both further to the right than his left-leaning party and New Unity, but said the differences were not intractable.

“We differ significantly with the National Alliance on several issues... At the same time, it should be understood that there is currently a situation in the country where certain elements on the agenda of our politics and society are more important than our ideological disagreements," Briškens said.

Brišken revealed that after the meeting with JV representatives, he was convinced that "Progressives" are able to find a common denominator with other parties and explain their position to others. Also, the "Progressives" are determined to represent the rights of the less protected groups of society - young people, seniors, single-parent families, people with disabilities - in the coalition and in the Saeima. At the same time, issues related to the gambling lobby, deforestation, and attacks on journalists will be important for the "Progressives" in the next Saeima convocation, Briškens said. 

Meanwhile, Kariņš, after the meeting with the "Progressives", emphasized that the participation of four parties in the coalition would ensure the formation of a stronger government than the narrower three-party model favored at present by the United List and National Alliance.

Talks will continue in coming days.

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