Former MK Marina Solodkin dies of stroke at 60
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Former MK Marina Solodkin dies of stroke at 60

Netanyahu laments death of 'upright public representative whose ear was always attuned to the problems of Israel's citizens'

Yifa Yaakov is a breaking news editor at The Times of Israel.

Former Kadima MK Marina Solodkin, who died in Latvia on Saturday, poses for a photo outside the Knesset building in 2010. (photo credit: Nati Shohat/Flash90)
Former Kadima MK Marina Solodkin, who died in Latvia on Saturday, poses for a photo outside the Knesset building in 2010. (photo credit: Nati Shohat/Flash90)

Former ‏Likud and Kadima MK Marina Solodkin died of a stroke Saturday while attending a conference on the prevention of fascism in Riga, Latvia.

Solodkin, who was 60 years old, was found dead in her Riga hotel room on Saturday.

The former MK felt ill after she gave an address at the conference, for which she had flown to Riga on Friday. She went to her hotel room, where she suffered a stroke and died.

Her body will be transported to Israel in the coming days.

On Friday, Solodkin wrote on the wall of her official Facebook page that she was about to fly to Latvia to participate in a round-table discussion on fascism along with representatives of the European Union and international organizations, as well as various governments.

She said the discussion would take place during a rally of Latvian citizens who had served in the Waffen-SS — the multinational Nazi military force — during World War II.

“Lately, neo-Nazism has been rearing its ugly head in eastern Europe, in post-Soviet countries,” Solodkin wrote. “We must exercise vigilance.”

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Solodkin was “an upright public representative whose ear was always attuned to the problems of Israel’s citizens.” He praised her “unpretentious and honest manner,” and said he had “liked and appreciated her very much.”

Labor Party leader MK Shelly Yachimovich called Solodkin “brilliant and one of a kind” and noted that she had “personally helped thousands of people.”

“The public has lost a terrific parliamentarian who always listened to every instance of distress and suffering,” she said.

Solodkin was born in Moscow, then still in the Soviet Union, in 1952, and made aliya in 1991. She served in a number of positions in the Knesset after joining the Yisrael BaAliya party led by Soviet dissident Natan Sharansky. In 1999, she was appointed deputy minister of immigrant absorption. She also chaired the Knesset’s Committee on the Status of Women.

Aside from her political activities, Solodkin authored three books and numerous articles. She held a doctoral degree in economics from Moscow University.

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