Human Rights Issues in Eurasia / Правовые Вопросы В Регионах Евразии

Latvia: Violations Of Most Political Rights For 365 000 Persons

Posted by Info on 08/03/2011

Over 2.3 million people live in Latvia; out of the total, 365,000 have no Latvian citizenship. Following Latvia’s cessation from the Soviet Union in 1991, they were deprived of most political rights, including the right to vote at municipal and general elections as well as at elections to the European Parliament.

Latvia collecting signatures for making Russian second official tongue
The collection of notarially certified signatures was organised so as to launch later a nation-wide referendum on this question. Organisers are sure that 10,000 signatures, necessary for a referendum, will be collected within three months.
The action was backed by the party For Human Rights in United Latvia that represented in opposition the interests of Russian-speaking residents for many years, but failed to win parliamentary seats at the last elections in October 2010.

The action “For mother tongue” was a response to the opposition nationalist association Fatherland and Freedom (All for Latvia). The latter organised a collection of notarially certified signatures of the country’s citizens for switching over Russian schools (financed by the state) to Latvian language education.

Latvian nationalists recently announced that they had collected 10,000 signatures necessary for a referendum.

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