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Some politicians use Ukraine to divert attention from internal problems — Riga mayor

December 12, 2014, 18:09 UTC+3 MOSCOW
“Many politicians use the events in Ukraine to distract attention from privatization of banks, teachers’ wages and the size of pensions,” Riga Mayor Nil Ushakov said
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Riga Mayor Nil Ushakov

Riga Mayor Nil Ushakov

© ITAR-TASS/Yury Mashkov

MOSCOW, December 12. /TASS/. Some Latvian politicians use the situation in Ukraine to distract attention from internal problems, Riga Mayor Nil Ushakov told TASS on Friday.

“Naturally, the events in Ukraine leave the mark on the internal policy and the rhetoric of many politicians. One should talk about the rhetoric of Latvian politicians and some Russian-speaking political figures. It is easier to talk about foreign policy for them than about internal economic problems. So it is in many countries,” Ushakov said.

“Many politicians use the events in Ukraine to distract attention from privatization of banks, teachers’ wages and the size of pensions,” he said.

“There are security problems. There are economic problems. The EU has the common position how to overcome the crisis that we are facing now. This is important. But sometimes, unfortunately, foreign policy is used for speculations to hide internal problems,” Ushakov said.

Latvian citizens’ approaches towards the events in Ukraine divided, he said.

“Most of Latvian residents support the Ukrainian authorities. Many people positively treat those who are now representing the eastern regions of Ukraine if we talk about Donetsk and Luhansk. Latvia actively supported Maidan,” he said.

The events in Odessa changed the mood in the society. “If before the events in Odessa Russian speakers took a neutral position, in principle, of course they were the turning point,” Ushakov said.

At the same time, he said there “are those who support Maidan and those who back Donbass among Russian speakers.” “The Ukrainian community is also divided,” Ushakov said.

Despite such different approaches, the Riga mayor noted what united all Latvian residents: “By looking at the events in Ukraine, we should do everything to prevent this from hapenning in Riga and Latvia.”

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