Long-standing chief re-appointed as head of State Security Service

In a closed session July 16, the government re-appointed Normunds Mežviets to a second term as head of the State Security Service.

After the closed meeting, interior Minister Sandis Ģirģens (KPV LV) told the press that he approves of Mežviets' work, and that this was a consequential move by the government.

Mežviets has been appointed to a five-year term as head of the State Security Service.

But the style of his re-appointment was criticized by New Conservative Party (JKP) members who walked out from the meeting in protest. This is a sensitive appointment for JKP, which has branded itself as an anti-corruption and "rule of law" party.

Prominent JKP member Juta Strīķe told LETA that the perceivedly obscure way Mežviets was re-appointed was reminiscent of ''the old political style'', and that the walk-out by JKP ministers from the government meeting is a ''yellow card'' to the current government.

Strike said that JKP plans to discuss with Prime Minister Krišjānis Kariņš (New Unity) in the near future over how he plans to review important matters within the coalition. 

She reminded that the JKP supports transparency, rule of law and openness, as well as good governance principles, instead of decisions being made under the rug in the ''style of Lembergs'', referring to Ventspils mayor Aivars Lembergs, an oligarch associated with the Greens and Farmers Union.

Meanwhile Kariņš repeatedly backed his decision and said there was majority support for re-appointing Mežviets.

Development/For! figurehead Daniels Pavļuts, however, admitted that there's some tension in the coalition but that there's currently no threat to the government's stability. 

Formerly known as Security Police, the State Security Service is Latvia's interior police force. 

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