Latvian court ruling targets EU-IMF bailout
Rahvusvahelised uudised 22 Dec 2009  EWR
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Andrew Willis, EUObserver

Latvia's constitutional court has ruled against government pension cuts, drawing a question mark over the country's ability to meet the terms of an international lending programme.

"The decision to cut pensions violated the individual's right to social security and the principle of the rule of law," the court said in its judgement, which cannot be appealed, on Monday (21 December).

The pension cuts - in place since July - formed a vital part of the Latvian government's list of austerity measures, as it struggles to bring down its ballooning budget deficit and comply with terms under an EU and IMF-led bailout.

The court ruled that the cuts - weighing in at between 10 and 70 percent of a pension depending on an individual's status - were illegal and parliament must have measures in place to rescind them by March 2010.

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