Suspicion about Misappropriation of the Money Granted for Publishing
In March 2003 mass media informed about the financial help of around 700 000 USD granted to Tatjana Ždanoka by the executives of the Mayor’s Office of Moscow in order to support publishing of the newspaper Panorama Latvii that had encountered financial difficulties. The freelance author of the newspaper Anatolijs Gončarovs stated that T.Ždanoka has allocated only 100 000 USD to the newspaper, besides as a loan, and that she has embezzled the rest of the money. T.Ždanoka announced that she will submit a claim about distribution of false information. In October 2006 Riga District Court ignored the action of T.Ždanoka regarding revocation of information that injures her reputation and dignity.
Newspaper Diena published an extensive research, expressing a version that the money that vanished, but initially was intended for publishing of the newspaper Panorama Latvii, has been used to organise protests against the education reform of 2004, which foresaw the transition of Latvian as language of instruction in the minority schools provided for by the state to the proportion of 60%.
T.Ždanoka admitted that she did address the fund Rossijaņe of the Mayor’s Office of Moscow, however it allocated by far modest help – only 30 000 USD, whereas Equal Rights, the party led by Ždanoka, covered the debts of the newspaper in the extent of LVL 23 000. Media pointed out that exactly at this time the National Harmony Party (TSP) separated from the alliance For Human Rights in United Latvia (PCTVL); TSP later became the initiator of the formation of Harmony Centre, the main ideological competitor of PCTVL.
In May 2003, shortly after the scandalous explanations, issuing of the weekly magazine in Russian Rakurss started, and it was initially distributed free of charge. A.Gončarovs emphasised to the newspaper Latvijas Avīze (then Lauku Avīze) that these costs are extremely high to the publisher: „I don’t know, if Ždanoka features officially or is a shadow manager of the newspaper, however the pictures of Ždanokas are on the first pages of it. Therefore I assume that the money of Moscow went exactly there.”
Linuža, L. Maskavas naudas un Ždanokas ceļi neizdibināmi. Lauku Avīze. 05.03.2003
Šabanovs, A. Štābs. Diena. 21.02.2004
Tomsone, D. LTV un "Latvijas Avīze" uzvar strīdos ar Ždanoku par goda un cieņas aizskārumu. Leta. 15.02.2007
Russian Money for the Campaign and to Non-Governmental Organisations Linked to T.Ždanoka
Suspicions that the pre-election campaign of PCTVL, providing support to NGOs and publishing of the newspaper Rakurss, was indirectly financed by Moscow were approved by the story of the TV broadcast Nekā personīga (Nothing Personal) on 7 June 2009, one day after local elections. Journalists got a hold of a copy of the letter written by the deputy of T.Ždanoka and addressed to the management of the municipality of Moscow. In the letter she requested 1 177 600 RUB (around 28 500 EUR) in order to publish information in Russian media of Latvia, including the newspaper Rakurss that was distributed free of charge during the pre-election period. The information would encompass stories about the activists of the party and a separate column dedicated to the European Parliament diary of T.Ždanoka. The money for this purpose has been received. The Mayor’s Office of Moscow has also previously provided financial support to T.Ždanoka, however not with direct transfers to PCTVL, but through the Latvian Human Rights Commission chaired by T.Ždanoka.
In 2012 the Centre of Investigative Journalism Re:Baltica wrote that NGOs linked to T.Ždanoka have received approximately 30 000 EUR from the foundation Russkij Mir formed under the wing of Russian President Vladimir Putin and aimed at promoting the Russian language and culture or so-called soft power abroad. T.Ždanoka named this number herself. The main purpose of the activities was to unite the Russians of Europe and to attain Russian the status of the official language of the European Union. However, an exact amount of the money received and spent is unknown as NGOs are obliged to submit annual reports to the State Revenue Service but not to publish them.
TV3: Nekā personīga. 07.06.2009
Raidījums: PCTVL priekšvēlēšanu aktivitātes sponsorējusi arī Maskavas pilsēta. Leta. 07.06.2009
Spriņģe, I. Motuzaite, D. Gailāne, G. Demokrātijas izplatīšana Latvijā Kremļa stilā. Re:Baltica. 16.03.2012 [skatīts 24.03.2014]
Hidden Advertising during the Pre-Election Campaign
In July 2009 it was disclosed that the Corruption Prevention and Combating Bureau (KNAB) discovered hidden pre-election advertising in four radio stations (Mix FM, SWH+, Pik 100 FM and Krievu Hitu radio); KNAB also informed the National Broadcasting Council (NRTP), which is responsible for the monitoring of the contents of TV and radio broadcasts. KNAB pointed to the recording of a broadcast Mums ir tiesības (We Have Rights) identically translated in all of the above mentioned stations; the broadcast included interviews with candidates of PCTVL, mainly with T.Ždanoka. NRTP proposed a record-keeping regarding an administrative violation against these radio stations, however ceased all four cases already in August, because the broadcast has been separated from the rest of the programme with a jingle about the advertisement.
Ādamsone, A. NRTP izbeidz administratīvo lietu par iespējamo slēpto reklāmu "Krievijas Hitu Radio" raidījumā "Mums ir tiesības". Leta. 13.08.2009
Supporting the Restoration of the USSR
On 2 March 2014 while Russian troops have already located themselves in Ukraine the Member of the European Parliament (EP) T.Ždanoka took part in the emergency congress of Russian organisation Sutj vremeņi, where, lifting the red flag of the organisation, she delivered a speech as a member of EP expressing support to the restoration of the USSR. Restoration of the Soviet Union is the objective of the particular organisation, and it has also been the main topic of the congress. T.Ždanoka refused to comment on her participation in the event to the newspaper Diena, she only mentioned that “it won’t be the restoration of the USSR as it was known, but, speaking the programming language, the USSR version 2.0”.
The newspaper questioned, if by acting so, T.Ždanoka does not violate the Criminal Law and is not inviting to destroy the independent state of Latvia. Expert of criminal law Andrejs Judins (Unity) indicated that it is hard to estimate, if T.Ždanoka has violated the Criminal Law, without hearing particular statements of her, as in the same way, she could have talked about restoration of the USSR without Latvia as its member. However, if T. Ždanoka invited to restore USSR including Latvia, it could be perceived as the violation of the Law. The Member of the European Parliament Kārlis Šadurskis (Unity) addressed the Office of the Prosecutor General, pleading to take criminal proceedings about the participation of T.Ždanokas in the organisations that advocate for the restoration of the USSR, thus turning against the constitutional system of the Republic of Latvia and its independence. Prosecutor’s Office forwarded the case to the Security Police, which has started an investigation.
Whereas on 16 March T.Ždanoka was an observer in the referendum on the autonomy of Crimea, followed by the Russia’s decision on annexation of the peninsula; the referendum was supported by Russia but not acknowledged internationally. The so-called referendum has been recognised as illegitimate by both – the Latvian state and the political group of the European Parliament The Greens / European Free Alliance represented by Ždanoka. The co-President of the group Rebecca Harms pointed out that the latest actions and support expressed by T.Ždanoka “of the Russian aggression and intervention in Crimea and eastern Ukraine are in complete and direct opposition with the very clear position the Greens/EFA group”.
Stankeviča, Z. Šadurskis vēršas Ģenerālprokuratūrā par kriminālprocesa ierosināšanu pret Ždanoku. Leta. 18.03.2014
Vēbere, I. Arī kolēģi lūdz izslēgt Ždanoku no tās Eiropas Parlamenta politiskās grupas. Leta. 19.03.2014
Kesnere, R. Ždanoka restartē PSRS. Diena. 19.03.2014
TV3: Nekā personīga. Ždanoka devusies novērot Krimas referendumu par Eiroparlamenta naudu. 23.03.2014
General information about the candidate: www.cvk.lv
Last changes 15.12.2014