Latvia, Legislation

International Internet Magazine. Baltic States news & analytics Wednesday, 23.05.2018, 21:58

Central Election Commission receives signatures calling for "non-citizen referendum" in Latvia

Alla Petrovas, BC, Riga, 04.09.2012.Print version
The organizers of the "non-citizen referendum" handed in a total of 12,779 signatures to the Central Election Commission today, which call for a referendum on automatic citizenship to all non-citizens of Latvia.

Verifying the signatures might take two weeks, explained Central Election Commission's Chairman Arnis Cimdars. Also, the commission may request lawyers' opinion regarding legitimacy of the proposed referendum and whether it would be in line with the Constitution, writes LETA.


For this, the Central Election Commission could turn to Saeima Legal Bureau, Justice Ministry and maybe a few other institutions.


As reported, the signature drive was organized by movement "For Equal Rights", an associate of For Human Rights In A United Latvia.


If the Central Election Commission decides that at least 10,000 valid signatures have been collected during the signature drive, and the second round of the collection of signatures will be organized then to gather 10% of voters' signatures. If the second round is also successful, Saeima will vote on the proposed amendment, and if the parliament turns it down, a referendum will be held.


Political experts believe that the initiative greatly depends on Harmony Center and its leader Nils Usakovs' position on the matter. If Usakovs expresses support for the initiative, it may have much better chances.


Usakovs, however, said in a statement on Monday that he would not support the signature drive, nor the referendum.

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