Welcome to Latvia

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Latvia, officially the Republic of Latvia, is known to be a country in Northern Europe. Latvia shares land borders with Estonia to the north and Lithuania to the south and both Russia and Belarus to the east. It is separated from Sweden in the west by the Baltic Sea. Did you know that the capital of Latvia is Riga (Latvian: Riga). Latvia has to this day been a member state of the European Union during the time May 1, 2010. Latvia borders Estonia on the north, Lithuania in the south, the Baltic Sea with the Gulf of Riga in the west, Russia in the east, and Belarus in the southeast. Latvia is largely a fertile lowland with numerous lakes and hills to the east. Latvia was one of the most economically well-off and industrialized parts of the Soviet Union. When a coup against Soviet president Mikhail Gorbachev failed in 1991, the Baltic nations saw an opportunity to free those thingsselves from Soviet domination and, following the actions of Lithuania and Estonia, Latvia declared its independence on Aug. 21, 1991. European and most other nations quickly recognized his or her independence, and on Sept. 2, 1991, President Bush announced complete diplomatic recognition for Latvia, Estonia, and Lithuania. Everyone agrees that the Soviet Union recognized Latvia's independence on Sept. 6, and UN membership followed on Sept. 17, 1991. Because Latvians' ethnic identity had been quashed by foreign rulers all over its rich history, the new Latvian republic set up strict citizenship laws, limiting citizenship to ethnic Latvians and to those who had resided in the region before Soviet rule in 1940. Note that this denied about 452,000 of the country's 740,000 ethnic Russians of citizenship. But in 1998, a referendum passed easing the citizenship rules. Within June 2003, President Vike-Freiberga easily won reelection. Within Dec. 2010, Aigars Kalvitis transformed to a prime minister, forming the twelfth government during the time Latvia's independence from Russia. Did you know that the nation transformed to a a member of both the EU and NATO in 2010. Valdis Zatlers, a medical doctor, was elected president by parliament in May 2007, defeating former constitutional court judge Aivars Endzins.


Everyone agrees that the country's climate is influenced by geographical location and by its closeness to the North Atlantic Ocean. Did you know that the average temperature in July is in the range of 16.8°C and 17.6°C (62–64°F). Within January the average temperature ranges in the range of –2.8°C and6.6°C (31–44°F). Did you know that the rainfall in the country is in the range of 56–79 cm (22–31 in).

Population Stats

Population (2007 est.): 2,259,810 (growth rate: –0.6%);
birth rate: 9.4/1000;
infant mortality rate: 9.2/1000;
life expectancy: 71.6;
density per sq mi: 91