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Although several people were killed, the barricades held and pro-democracy forces prevailed to restore full independence in August 1991.Although Latvia declared its independence in 1918, it wasn’t until 1921 that the Entente countries, the victors in the First World War, recognised the independent Republic of Latvia.Since 1992 Latvia has joined others in the world recognising this as Mother’s Day.Since the mother is the central figure of traditional Latvian families, the essence of this holiday has not changed.About 200 000 Latvian soldiers were compelled to serve in the military forces of both occupying states, and approximately half of them (100 000) died while hoping to restore Latvia’s independence.One of Latvia’s greatest achievements since the restoration of the independence in 1991, was to become a member of the European Union in 2004.
Many in the world celebrate this as Labour Day, so does Latvia. On this date in 1920 the Constitutional Assembly, the first democratically elected Parliament of the Republic of Latvia, convened for its first session to draft and pass the state constitution.After a pro-independence government was established in Latvia in May 1990, the Soviet government in Moscow increased pressure to block Latvia’s peaceful mass movement toward freedom.In January 1991 the Soviet Union mobilized its security forces in an attempt to remove Latvia’s elected leaders.The Second World War brought great destruction to Latvia and enormous suffering to the Latvian people.
Both Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union violated international law by forcibly mobilising Latvian citizens into their armed forces.
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