Virtual exhibition traces fates of Latvian Legionnaires extradited from Sweden to USSR

The Latvian War Museum has a new digital exhibition available online titled 'The Lost Dream of Freedom' ('Zaudētais sapnis par brīvību'). 

It is the tragic story of Latvian soldiers extradited to the Soviet Union by the Swedish government on January 25, 1946. 

In the exhibition, a wide range of photographs, documents and letters of former Latvian Legionnaires will be viewable, complemented by various types of visual materials and informative graphics.

The digital exhibition was created in cooperation with the National Archives of Latvia and launched on March 22.

The extradition of Latvian soldiers from Sweden to the Soviet Union is one of the most controversial and tragic episodes of the Second World War from the Latvian perspective. The soldiers who fought on the German side had escaped to Sweden with the goal of escaping the USSR and making their way onward.

However, their hopes were to be dashed when Sweden placed them in internment camps behind barbed wire fences and eventually decided to send them back across the Baltic to face the judgment of the occuping power in Latvia, the Soviet Union.

You can visit the virtual exhibition at:, though at present it is available only in Latvian. However, to learn more about the fates of Latvian Legionnaires in the Soviet Union, you might like to read this article from our archives.

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