UPDATED: How Peter Greste became a Latvian

Take note – story published 7 years and 6 months ago

Speaking in Riga December 1 at a special event held at the Stockholm School of Economics in Riga to mark 250 years since Sweden introduced the world's first press freedom law, acclaimed journalist Peter Greste told LSM how he found out he had received Latvian citizenship.

While incarcerated in Egypt on trumped-up charges of aiding terrorists, Greste had no idea that diplomatic wheels were in motion in Latvia on his behalf.

And it took a smuggled message about a story originally reported by LSM and then picked up by the AFP newswire to inform him that he was now officially of dual Australian-Latvian nationality.

Peter also delivered a keynote speech at the event designed to celebrate the landmark Swedish law, which was the first modern press freedom legislation.

The event was supported and introduced by the Swedish and Finnish embassies in Latvia.

He also signed copies of his new book, Freeing Peter, written in collaboration with other members of his family who joined forces to fight for his return from custody in Egypt. 

The Stockholm School also hosted a temporary exhibition about Sweden's press freedom law. It includes the story of Johan Schonheit, who was brutally tortured and executed in 1706 for lampooning the Swedish crown. Coincidentally, according to Swedish Wikipedia, he was believed to have come from Riga in Sweden's Livonian dominions.

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