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The name "Latvia" originates from the ancient Latgalians, one of four eastern Baltic tribes that formed the ethnic core of the Latvian people (ca. 8th-12th centuries A.D.). The region subsequently came under the control of Germans, Poles, Swedes, and finally, Russians. A Latvian republic emerged following World War I, but it was annexed by the USSR in 1940 - an action never recognized by the US and many other countries. Latvia reestablished its independence in 1991 following the breakup of the Soviet Union. Although the last Russian troops left in 1994, the status of the Russian minority (some 28% of the population) remains of concern to Moscow. Latvia joined both NATO and the EU in the spring of 2004.


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Transportation

Airports World Ranking: 102
42 (2012)

Airports - with paved runways
Total 19
Over 3,047 m 1
2,438 to 3,047 m 3
1,524 to 2,437 m 5
914 to 1,523 m 3
Under 914 m 7 (2012)

Airports - with unpaved runways
Total 23
Under 914 m 23 (2012)

Heliports
1 (2012)

Pipelines
Gas 948 km; refined products 415 km (2010)

Railways World Ranking: 67
Total 2,239 km
Broad gauge 2,206 km 1.520-m gauge
Narrow gauge 33 km 0.750-m gauge (2008)

Roadways World Ranking: 64
Total 73,074 km
Paved 14,459 km
Unpaved 58,615 km (2010)

Waterways World Ranking: 93
300 km (navigable year round) (2010)

Merchant marine World Ranking: 113
Total 11
By type
Cargo 3, chemical tanker 1, passenger/cargo 4, petroleum tanker 2, roll on/roll off 1
Foreign-owned 3 (Estonia 3)
Registered in other countries
79 (Antigua and Barbuda 16, Belize 9, Comoros 2, Dominica 2, Georgia 1, Liberia 5, Malta 8, Marshall Islands 19, Russia 2, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 15) (2010)

Ports and terminals
Riga, Ventspils


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  Latvia (Riga):


  GPS points from Latvia (Riga)

Meyrs Gulbenes Rajons

Stalgene Jelgavas Rajons

Ceresu Ezers Aglonas Novads

Nicgales Mezs Daugavpils Rajons

Lielkangaru Muiza Ropazu Novads

Niperavas Pusmuiza Rezeknes Rajons

Mordangas Ezers Talsu Rajons

Kisi Strencu Novads




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