Kalniete to tackle Eastern partnership and EU enlargement

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Sandra Kalniete of the Unity party, continuing for a second term as an MEP in the European People’s Party (EPP) political group, will head the center-right faction’s Eastern partnership and EU expansion efforts as a newly-elected vice-president, her spokesman Martins Spravniks said Tuesday.

The position in the multi-national legislature’s largest political faction, sometimes known as the Christian Democrats, is considered to be strategically important. As one of the faction’s vice-presidents, Kalniete stressed that “the belonging of Ukraine, Moldova and Georgia to Europe is of vital importance to Latvia’s security.”

“That’s why I’m pleased that my professional knowledge in foreign affairs and regional experience will prove useful to Europe. Both next year when Latvia’s presidency of the Council of the EU will host the Eastern Partnership summit in Riga, and thereafter, we will have close cooperation with the Latvian government,” she added in her statement Tuesday.

Kalniete will also be serving as a member of the Committee on Foreign Affairs and as a substitute on the Agriculture and Rural Development Committee in addition to her responsibilities as EPP faction vice-president for Eastern Partnership and enlargement issues.

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