Outgoing Prime Minister Krisjanis Karins’ pro-Western centrist party (New Unity) has won Latvia’s parliamentary elections with nearly 19% of the vote, the near-final result.
Weakening of the Russian-speaking parties
At the same time, these results confirm the weakening of the parties supported by the Russian-speaking minority: the “stability!” is the only one to surpass the 5 percent hurdle with 6.75%, while the once-powerful historic formation of the Russian-speaking “Harmony” finds itself outside parliament, as does the Latvian Union of Russians (pro-Kremlin).
Latvians unite in the face of Russian threats
By voting for continuity, voters in the Baltic country have decided to stand behind the outgoing prime minister in the face of Russian threats.
“Neither I, nor my government, nor my country are reacting with fear,” said Krisjanis Karins. “We know Russia, we have known Russia’s politics for years. We discussed for years before the war started and tried to warn our neighbors, so this is nothing new to us. We will continue to invest in our own defenses as a NATO member state.” We will continue to work with our NATO partners to ensure that Latvia and the Baltic regions remain as secure in the future as they are today.”
The Russian offensive in Ukraine has heightened concerns in the former Soviet republic harboring NATO troops on its soil. The majority of Latvians support the priorities announced by the outgoing government: increasing the defense budget, solidarity with Ukraine and energy independence from Russia.
VIDEO – Legislature in Latvia: pro-Western party at the top, Russian-speaking parties in decline