Latgale no extremist hotbed, says Interior minister

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The three men under Security Police (DP) investigation for supporting terrorist activities in Donbass should not be associated with the Latgale town of Ludza, Interior Minister Rihards Kozlovskis told Latvian Radio Wednesday.

“These persons have been away from the region, living near Riga for at least ten years or more, so one cannot make the case that Latgale is a problem zone for, how should I say, extremism and the wish to fight for pro-separatist forces,” he said.

Kozlovskis and State Police chief Ints Ķuzis were in Latgale Wednesday on a fact-finding visit with local government authorities. The minister stated that he strongly disagreed with the idea that southeast Latgale province is a pro-Russian hotbed:

“I totally do not believe Latgale is the place where separatism will develop,” he said.

He also went on to repeat that the public should have no security concerns based on any information currently at the DP’s disposal regarding the ongoing investigation into the possible terrorism supporters. Despite having halted the visible activities of certain groups, such as those using the flags of the Donetsk ‘people’s republic’ to gather humanitarian aid in Riga for instance, Kozlovskis said he wanted to “calm society and state that we have no grounds for worry that we are under any threat.”

Iekšlietu ministrs Rihards Kozlovskis
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