President: nominating Lembergs for PM’s seat would cause enormous risks for Latvia’s security

In his interview to Latvijas Radio programme Krustpunktā, Latvia’s President Egils Levits said that the decision by the Union of Greens and Farmers to pick Aivars Lembergs as their candidate for the seat of prime minister presented an enormous risk for Latvia and the country’s security.
When asked if the Union of Greens and Farmers can be considered a part of democratic parties in Latvia, Levits said no.
«[The party] has not distanced themselves from a person who represents oligarchy, corruption, and who is under sanctions imposed by our strategic allies,» said Levits.

«With such a person and a party that supports such a person – all of this is a security risk for Latvia. If some political party doesn’t understand this, they are outside the democratic spectrum.»

When asked if Lembergs’ nomination as prime minister could have been possible had the party won the elections, Egils Levits said it will not happen as long as he is Latvia’s president.
«Not with me around. I would never even consider such an idea. It would be an enormous security risk for Latvia. It is impossible,» said Levits, adding that «Latvia’s security is priority number one».
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Commenting on other parties potentially cooperation with the Union of Greens and Farmers in the coalition formation process under condition they distance themselves from Aivars Lembergs, Levits said it is important to not only distance from him but also performed an in-depth analysis as to why this is happening so late.
«If this was serious reflection and analysis as to how this party has made it this far over the years. In this case I believe it is worth considering, but if it isn’t, it’s completely unacceptable.»
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