The Lithuanian parliament, Seimas, rejected an initiative to start impeachment proceedings against MP Irina Rozova over her undisclosed ties with Russian diplomats.
The proposal from the parliamentary Committee on National Security and Defence (NSGK) was rejected by the majority of 62 votes, against 41 votes in favour of the impeachment proceedings.
“I would like to thank all fellow Seimas members for this vote. I believe that we can express our delight and conclude that common sense has finally prevailed in Seimas,” said Rozova addressing the parliament.
The liberal MP Eugenijus Gentvilas said after the vote that by rejecting the impeachment proceedings against Rozova the Lithuanian parliament has become vulnerable to Russian influence.
The NSGK investigation into Rozova’s conduct started after the State Security Department found out in January 2018 that the MP discussed financial support for her party, the Russian Alliance, with Russian diplomats and that she had contacts with Russian Consul General Vladimir Malygin who was sent out of Lithuania in 2014.
In January this year, Lithuanian parliamentarians collected 44 signatures in support of impeachment proceedings against Rozova.
The impeachment motion stated that “there are sufficient grounds to conclude that MP Rozova deliberately tried to conceal her ties with representatives of Russia’s diplomatic corps and the nature of these ties from the State Security Department’s officials when applying for access to classified materials.”
Rozova maintained that she did not need to report her contacts with Russian diplomats because they were not personal and called the investigation a “witch hunt”.