Latvia bans unvaccinated lawmakers from voting, docks pay

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Latvia’s parliament voted on Friday to ban lawmakers who refuse the Covid-19 vaccine from voting on legislature and participating in discussions.
Latvia, which has one of the lowest vaccination rates in European Union, was the first in the bloc to reimpose a lockdown this autumn as a surge in the Covid-19 cases threatens to overwhelm its health system.
The restrictions on vaccine-rejecting lawmakers, which includes docking their pay, was supported by 62 of its 100 lawmakers, and will last from Monday until mid-2022.
State television reported that nine MPs have rejected the vaccine.
The ban on unvaccinated MPs in parliament was necessary to promote public confidence in the government’s policies to control the Covid-19 infections, the legislation’s sponsor, lawmaker Janis Rancans, was cited as saying by the parliamentary press service.
Latvia, home to 1.9 million people, has reported 236,765 infections and 3,646 coronavirus-related deaths since the pandemic began.

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