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Baltic farmers to hold rally at European Parliament building

Photo: Edijs Palens.
 RIGA, Nov 22 - Baltic farmers' joint protest against the discriminatory European Union direct payments will be held in Brussels today: about 100 farmers will participate in a rally at the European Parliament building that will begin at 1 p.m. local time.
A Soviet-era "MTZ 80" tractor, which was driven from Tallinn to Brussels to draw attention to the European Union's unequal direct payments to Baltic farmers, will also be parked near the European Parliament building during the protest.
Prime Minister Valdis Dombrovskis (Unity), who is currently in Brussels to attend the European Council's two-day talks on the EU's multi-annual budget, will address the participants in the rally.
Latvia also wants Brussels to introduce fair direct payments to farmers, stipulating that the lowest payments must constitute at least 80 percent of the average amount of the EU direct payments already in 2014. At the moment, Latvian farmers receive the smallest direct payments in the EU, LVL 63 per hectare or less, while the average figure in Europe is EUR 266 or LVL 186 per hectare.
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