Latvia’s experience and leadership will be decisive in the coming steps the EU will need to make to overcome threats to democratic values, EU’s welfare and peace, said chairperson of the European Parliament Roberta Metsola in her speech at the final meeting of the 13th Saeima.
Latvia is very well aware of «what we are dealing with», she admitted, adding that the country’s warnings about Russia were correct. We have to fight for peace with freedom, justice and responsibility, said the politician.
Metsola said Latvia is an example of residents and politicians uniting to oppose a brutal, autocratic force. But it is necessary for greater EU solidarity, which is especially important to overcome the energy resources and economic crisis.
«If we don’t act together now, the rapidly growing negative effects will impact the welfare of EU businessmen, households and residents,» said the EP chairperson.
The politician said Latvia for her is a symbol of hope, change and resilience. The country is proof people can overcome difficulties, oppose and break away from the shackles of history by joining the European Union and creating a shared future. Europe’s values exist in Latvian residents. The 100th anniversary of Latvia’s parliament is a celebration of the freedom to choose your future, said Metsola. EP representative said she respects the politicians that opposed the Soviet power.
Political courage is needed when opposing the unfair, illegal and unacceptable Russian aggression and invasion of Ukraine – a sovereign European country, said Metsola.
The politician said Europe is going through Kremlin’s attempt to rewrite history, restore the iron curtain and spheres of influence, adding that this is unacceptable.
According to Metsola, EU has imposed very far reaching and painful sanctions against Russia and Belarus very quickly. EU is proud of walking together with Ukraine, but even more must be done, said the EP chairperson.
In her first speech when she became EP chairperson, Metsola promised she will never be neutral «between the fire and fire fighters». We have to continue helping Ukraine, so it wins, stressed the politician.
She said this means Russia must be brought to justice for the war crimes. Metsola also added more sanctions should follow, and that it is necessary to enhance security along Latvia’s borders, provide more financial and military assistance to Ukraine, as well as supply them with tanks and anti-air systems.
She also mentioned it is important to strengthen cross-border ties between Baltic States. Rail Baltica project ma assist with this, adding that this project has value for military mobility.
Also read: Latvia’s 13th Saeima gathers for one last meeting