On Tuesday, 6 December, the NATO Parliamentary Assembly’s annual Transatlantic Forum was held in Washington, D.C., commemorating Ojārs Ēriks Kalniņš (1949-2021), Member of the Saeima, a long-standing diplomat and politician. O.Ē.Kalniņš chaired the Saeima delegation to the NATO Parliamentary Assembly for many years.
Raimonds Bergmanis, Chair of the Defence, Internal Affairs and Corruption Prevention Committee, and Irma Kalniņa, Secretary of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Saeima, participate in the Transatlantic Forum of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly, which held a session named after O.Ē.Kalniņš on sustainable defence of transatlantic values in a competitive strategic environment. The Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Latvia to the United States, Māris Selga, also attended the session.
Participants of the session stressed O.Ē.Kalniņš’ indispensable contribution to Latvia’s path to freedom and independence, as well as his profound dedication to gaining support from allies. The participants described him as talented and charismatic politician, emphasising that O.Ē.Kalniņš would be proud of the united position of NATO countries in supporting Ukraine.
Irma Kalniņa, O.Ē.Kalniņš’ widow and Secretary of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Saeima: “We were both children of refugees, grown up and lived with a huge sense of loss. That is why we decided to be politically active, and so we were. Ojārs defended the principles of democracy in everything he did — politics, poetry, his family and circle of friends.”
The NATO Parliamentary Assembly is a consultative interparliamentary organisation founded in 1955, which brings together parliamentarians of the countries of the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation. The Parliamentary Assembly establishes an important link between NATO and national parliaments, strengthens political dialogue and promotes public support for the Alliance’s policies.
Saeima Press Service