Officials mark Latvia's 99th birthday

Latvia's top officials released statements and speeches November 18 marking the 99th anniversary of the nation's founding in 1918.

Prime Minister Maris Kučinskis said:

"I am honored and glad to congratulate the Latvian people and Latvians all over the world
on the 99th birthday of our country's independence. Establishment of the Republic of Latvia almost a century ago was possible because there were people who believed in their country and in being masters in their own land.

''Since the historic events of 1918, a lot of time has passed, the country has seen many different twists of destony, but belief in ourselves and our future has never been lost," the Prime Minister said.

Kučinskis also described Latvia as a "Nordic green European country with strong roots."

Opening a new exhibition tracing a century of diplomacy at the Foreign Ministry building in Riga, Foreign Minister Edgars Riņkevičs said:

“In the Foreign Ministry building, we can read what Zigfrīds Anna Meierovics said almost one hundred years ago in his address to the Constituent Assembly soon after Latvia was recognised de jure: We fought for our freedom with weapons in our hands, but it was with our minds and pens that we achieved the recognition of our state. And we too have come to the conclusion that the freedom and independence of the state must be protected with our minds and pens. We are doing that on a daily basis in today’s rapidly changing world." 

"Our future lies in active diplomacy, strengthening the European Union and NATO and raising our prosperity,” the minister said.

In honour of the 99th anniversary of the Republic of Latvia, Latvian embassies and representations are organising and supporting events, including festive receptions, concerts and unveiling of exhibitions, arranged together with the members of the diaspora, Latvian NGOs, associations of friends of Latvia and other cooperation partners worldwide.

For live coverage of the day's celebrations throughout the day on November 18 wherever you are in the world, follow the livestream of the Visiem LTV channel HERE.

Among the traditional highlights is the speech by the President and military parade along the bank of the River Daugava, with streamed coverage starting at 13:25 Riga time/11:25 GMT. 

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