Parliament passed on final reading a bill to ease the way forethnic Russians who settled in Latvia during the Soviet era to becomeLatvian citizens. The bill eases the language requirement for most adultsseeking citizenship. It also allows persons born in Latvia of statelessparents after August, 1991, to become citizens automatically at age 15 attheir parents request, without any language requirement. The primeminister, whose party supported the bill, is backing a petition drive to putthe issue to a national referendum. In Russia, Foreign Minister Primakovcalled the bill “cosmetic” and said it does little to end discriminationagainst Latvia’s large ethnic Russian population.