Lithuania may face fines following the decision by parliamentarians not to allow former Lithuanian president Rolandas Paksas to run again for elected office, according to Prime Minister Algirdas Butkevičius.
Algirdas Butkevičius, Rolandas Paksas
© DELFI / Kiril Čachovskij

The prime minister said he had expected a different decision by parliamentarians on the issue: “I expected a different decision for several reasons. First, the fact that we as politicians do not look very good in an international context, because the European Court of Human Rights has stated clearly that no democratic state can prohibit a politician from standing for elections for the rest of that person’s life.

“Second, it needs to be understood that fines may be imposed on Lithuania for such decisions. However, we have shown that in some cases the personal ambitions of some politicians get above our country's democratic principles and an understanding of the law,” Butkevičius said

The Prime Minister also added that: “We cannot deny people’s right to express their opinion regarding one or another politician. Here, I think, is yet another problem, that politicians sometimes assume maybe too much power, sometimes leaving the society without the right to come to elections and express their position on a preferred candidate.”

Former Lithuanian president Rolandas Paksas was impeached for violating the constitution in 2004.

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