Politics
Latvia's Environment Ministry renamed
Latvia's Environment Ministry renamed
The Ministry of Environmental Protection and Regional Development (VARAM) will be called the Ministry of Smart Administration and Regional Development (also VARAM) as of July 1, according to the amendments to the Law on Cabinet Structure adopted by the Saeima on Thursday, June 6, in the final reading.
Mayor for Jelgava district still on hold
Mayor for Jelgava district still on hold
An agreement has still not been reached on the candidate for the position of chairman of the Jelgava district council, but the current deputy chairwoman of the council Ilze Vītola (Latvian Farmers Union) is mentioned as the most realistic candidate by the LETA news agency.
National Alliance leads in Latvia's EP party ratings in May
National Alliance leads in Latvia's EP party ratings in May
The European Parliament (EP) elections will take place in June, with 16 lists of candidates. A survey by pollster SKDS and Latvian Television asked Latvian residents who they would vote for if the EP elections were held in May.
Šlesers, Bartaševičs to join forces for municipal elections
Šlesers, Bartaševičs to join forces for municipal elections
The party "Latvia First" (LPV), founded by MP Ainārs Šlesers plans to run in next year's local elections together with the party "Together for Latvia", founded and led by former Rezekne mayor Aleksandrs Bartaševics, according to a statement by LPV to the media.
Rēzekne city council's dismissal legally unjustified, Saeima lawyers warn
Rēzekne city council's dismissal legally unjustified, Saeima lawyers warn
The arguments in the project on the dismissal of the Rēzekne City Council in financial difficulties, prepared by the Ministry of Environmental Protection and Regional Development (VARAM) and supported by the Government, are insufficient and the State would lose in case of legal proceedings, warns the Legal Bureau of the Saeima.
National Alliance tops April's party ratings
National Alliance tops April's party ratings
The April party ratings show that the right-of-center National Alliance political party currently is most popular among the Latvian society, according to a poll conducted by SKDS on the order of LTV.
Sārts: West should use influence in Georgia to sustain democracy
Sārts: West should use influence in Georgia to sustain democracy
The Georgian government has a tendency to become authoritarian, and the West should use its influence in Georgia to ensure that the democratic processes in the country are sustained, said Jānis Sārts, head of the NATO Strategic Communications Centre of Excellence, in an interview on Latvian Television May 14 evening.
State Chancellery's director subject to disciplinary case
State Chancellery's director subject to disciplinary case
Prime Minister Evika Siliņa (New Unity”) has ordered to initiate disciplinary proceedings against the Director of the State Chancellery Jānis Citskovskis in relation to alleged violations in the case of special flights of former Prime Minister Krisjanis Karins (New Unity), according to the statement in the official publication “Latvijas Vēstnesis” on May 13.
Latvian government to discuss buying airBaltic bonds
Latvian government to discuss buying airBaltic bonds
The state could purchase bonds of the national airline airBaltic worth not more than EUR 100 million, Finance Minister Arvils Ašeradens (New Unity) said in a media briefing on Monday, April 29, after a coalition meeting.
SAB, KNAB claim no information about alleged election rig attempts(update)
SAB, KNAB claim no information about alleged election rig attempts(update)
The Constitutional Protection Bureau (SAB) and the Corruption Prevention and Combating Bureau (KNAB) have not received any information from the IT company SOAAR that it may have received encouragement from the Unity party to influence the results of the 2014 Saeima elections, Latvian Radio reported on April 25.
Justice Minister says claims against Unity are 'absurd'
Justice Minister says claims against Unity are 'absurd'
The allegations by the head of the IT company SOAAR Renārs Kadžulis that during the 2014 Saeima elections, there have been attempts to falsify election results, are "absurd and undermine the statehood of Latvia", Minister of Justice Inese Lībiņa-Egnere (New Unity) said in an interview on the Latvian Television's morning newscast on April 25. 
Allegations of 2014 election result falsifying attempts by Unity party
Allegations of 2014 election result falsifying attempts by Unity party
During the 2014 Saeima elections, the then Secretary General of the "Unity" political party, Artis Kampars, allegedly asked the election software provider – information technology (IT) company "SOAAR" – to falsify the election results, the head of SOAAR Renārs Kadžulis claimed on the Latvian Television program "What's Happening in Latvia?/Kas notiek Latvijā? (KNL)" on April 24.
PM promises to tackle red tape
PM promises to tackle red tape
Excessive bureaucracy in Latvia is a problem, and the government will work purposefully to reduce the bureaucratic burden in the country, Prime Minister Evika Siliņa (New Unity) promised on Latvian Television's "Morning Panorama" program April 24.
Why weren't Kariņš' flight issues caught earlier?
Why weren't Kariņš' flight issues caught earlier?
In Latvia, the main audit authority – State Audit Office – carries out annual inspections of all main public institutions, including the State Chancellery. One of the loudest scandals in Latvian politics in recent months has been linked to the State Chancellery – the special flights of former PM Krišjānis Kariņš. Why did the State Audit Office not reveal these violations before? Latvian Television asked the question on April 18.
Latvians say they will vote in large numbers in euroelections...
Latvians say they will vote in large numbers in euroelections...
A strong majority of Latvian citizens say they intend to vote in upcoming European Parliament elections, according to a survey carried out by Eurobarometer – the results of which are surprising given voters' actual track record in previous ballots.
Latvia and Ukraine discuss future financial assistance
Latvia and Ukraine discuss future financial assistance
On Tuesday, April 16, Latvian Finance Minister Arvils Ašeradens met with Ukrainian Finance Minister Serhiy Marchenko at the annual World Bank Group (WBG) and International Monetary Fund (IMF) spring meeting in Washington, according to a release from the Finance Ministry. 
Opposition plans to ask for Culture Minister's resignation
Opposition plans to ask for Culture Minister's resignation
The opposition National Alliance, which was in charge of the Ministry of Culture for several years, will demand the resignation of the current Minister of Culture, Agnese Logina (Progressives), former Culture Minister Nauris Puntulis (National Alliance) said on Latvian Radio Wednesday, April 17.
Baiba Braže named as candidate for Foreign Minister(update)
Baiba Braže named as candidate for Foreign Minister(update)
The New Unity political force has nominated diplomat Baiba Braže for the post of Foreign Minister, which is vacant after the resignation of Krišjānis Kariņš, Prime Minister Evika Siliņa (New Unity) announced in a briefing on Monday, April 15.
Recovery of wasted funds to be considered in 'Air Kariņš' case
Recovery of wasted funds to be considered in 'Air Kariņš' case
Last week, a lengthy audit of former Prime Minister Krišjānis Kariņš' use of special flights during his time as PM was published. The auditor concluded that hundreds of thousands of euros were both unlawfully and uneconomically used. The possibility to get the money back will be assessed in criminal proceedings, Latvian Television's De Facto reported April 14.

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