Saeima to decide on restitution of Jewish property and civil partnership rights

In the near future, two socially controversial bills are going to be put on the Saeima's agenda – one proposing the restitution of the Jewish community's former property and the other the resolution of domestic partnership rights, Latvian Television reported on June 11.

Both bills are supported by the “Development/For” party alliance, which claims that there already are enough votes in Saeima to pass the bill.

This week, the Saeima will be deciding on whether to approve a bill that requires the Latvian Jewish community be paid compensation for the illegal seizure of property.

The amount from the state basic budget mentioned in the document is 40 million euro. It is planned to start paying the compensation after a year and a half and complete it in ten years.

The leader of the “Development/For” faction Daniels Pavļuts explained that it is a financial equivalent “determined by the cadastral value to which the Jewish community, as far as I know, would agree.”

According to the coalition agreement, the issue of the property of the Jewish community can be advanced without the consent of all government parties.

The information acquired by Latvian Television states that two of the coalition parties may refuse to support the bill, but with the votes from the opposition, the bill might still gain parliamentary approval.

Pavļuts also confirmed that a bill on the resolution of domestic partnership and unmarried couples rights may be submitted to Saeima before the Jāņi festival later this month. “Development/For” chooses to use the term couples instead of domestic partners to emphasise that this is not a substitute for marriage.

This issue may also be advanced without the joint support of the coalition parties. 

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