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Flag of Latvia

Latvia's flag.

Latvija viki

Latvia's cultural sub-divisions and major settlements.

Latvia is one of the 3 Baltic states and has a population of 2.2 million。 They are of Balitc (akin to Lithiuanians and Courlanders) origins. The capital is Riga, home to the Riga International Airport

Latvia is a unitary parliamentary republic and is divided into 118 administrative divisions, of which 109 are municipalities and 9 are cities. The nation of Latvia is a member of the United Nations, European Union, Council of Europe, NATO, OSCE, IMF and WTO, and is part of the Schengen Area. It was a member of the League of Nations (1921–1946) and of the Baltic Free Trade Area (1994–2004), the Council of the Baltic Sea States. Together with Estonia and Lithuania, it is involved in a trilateral Baltic States cooperation and of Nordic-Baltic cooperation acts. The UN still lists Latvia as a country with a "Very High Human Development Index "(HDI).

Riga is a member of the Eurocities group, the Union of the Baltic Cities and Union of Capitals of the European Union (UCEU) groups. Riga is also considered an international city.

National Anthem of Latvia01:53

National Anthem of Latvia

National Anthem of Latvia.

HistoryEdit

Poland & The New Baltic States

The geo-political situation that follwed the treaties of Versailles and Brest-Litovsk is reflected in this 1918 map.

The Russian Bolshiviks invaded the 1 year old Latvia nation in 1919, and created the Latvian SSR in 1919-1920, but Eastern Latvia was cleared of Red Army forces, driven out by Latvian and Polish troops in early 1920. It is to be noted that from a Polish perspective the Battle of Daugavpils was a part of the Polish-Soviet War.

Latvia was incorporated into the Soviet Union on August 5, 1940 as The Latvian Soviet Socialist Republic. During 1940, at least 27,586 individuals were arrested and most were deported for alleged cooperation with German army, with about 945 persons were shot by the Soviet secret Police.

Latvia was then administered as part of Germany's Reichskommissariat Ostland during World War 2. The Latvian paramilitary and Auxiliary Police units helped Germany with the Holocaust, with approximately 75,000 Latvian Jews being murdered by the Germans and their Latvian collaborators. The mass killing of 2,749 Jews on the beach near the city of Liepāja took place in December 1941. The Germans made a last stand in 1945 in what was then named as "The Courland Pocket".
United Baltic Duchy flag

The Flag of the United Baltic Duchy of 1918-1919.

Over 200,000 Latvian citizens died during World War II and Latvian soldiers fought on both sides of the conflict, including in a Latvian Legion of the Waffen-SS, most of them conscripted by the occupying Nazi and Soviet authorities against their wishes.

The Soviets re-annexed Latvia in late 1944 and thousands were again deported. By 1980, it was a leading Soviet republic, but was now about 25-30% Russia (plus many Ukrainians and some Byelorussians) and politically repressed.

However, similar to the other Baltic states, the Republic of Latvia government continues to exist in Washington D.C., and again control the territory in 1991. The Baltic gold and money in Western banks is frozen until the independence (September 1991).
Flag of Latvian SSR 1919

The flag of the Latvian SSR of 1919-1920.

Economic stagnation occurred in the early 1990s, Latvia claimed to have one of best growth figures between 1998 and 2006. In the 2008–2010 global financial crisis, Latvia was the hardest hit of the European Union member states, due to a mixture of high international debts and Germany's predatorily economic policies with in the EU. The economy had a sharp GDP decline of 26.54% during the crisis, but the decline had stopped by 2010. The workers' village of Skrunda-1, site of a former Hen House radar installation in Latvia, is now a ghost town that was auctioned off in its entirety in early 2010.
125px-Flag of Latvian SSR.svg

Latvian SSR flag, 1944 - 1991

Latvia has a vocal green party that is called the Latvian Green Party, (Latvian:Zala Partija) as the political partner of the Green/Farmers' Union or Zalo un Zemnieku Savieniba (ZZP).

The Latvians or Letts (latvieši; laett) have the paternal DNA Haplogroup N1c1 as the most frequent one at 45% of those tested, which also occurs heavily in Finland, northern Siberia and the rest of the Baltic states.

Geography and climateEdit

Satellite image of Latvia in March 2003

A satalite imamage of the Vidzeme Upland (Vidzeme Highland, Latvian: Vidzemes Augstiene).

The Summers are warm, the weather in spring and autumn is fairly mild, but winters are cold and bitter. Bitterly cold winds and severe snowfalls are very common in the height of winter.

The Vidzeme Uplands (Vidzeme Highland, Latvian: Vidzemes Augstiene). The upland contains the Gaiziņkalns hill, which is the highest point of Latvia.

FolkloreEdit

Gaizins

View from atop the tower of Gaizinkalns.

White-Wagtail

The White Wagtail is the national bird of Latvia.

Some Latvian Dinas folk songs often refer to the oak and linden tree. Folklore the linden tree is looked upon as a female symbol, but the oak as a male symbol and may be the origin of the nation's reverence for these trees, which in earlier times were considered sacred. It is still possible to fined in the middle of a cultivated field a lone large and, 'sacred oak' or linden tree.

ComputingEdit

Riga had hosted the 40th International Colloquium on Automata, Languages and Programming, at the University of Latvia on 7/10/2013. It is known as one of the leading conferences in the field of of theoretical computer science and programming.

International alliancesEdit

Also seeEdit

MapEdit

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