While US media outlets and experts are speculating on expected Russian invasion in the Baltic states that will lead to an open military conflict between the US-led alliance and Russia and even to the usage of tactical nukes, the situation in the region is developing in own, much more prosaic way. This way does not include Russian “little green men” or a space bear marines, intervening peaceful US allies, no. It includes a constant pressure on the Russian-speaking population, for example, in Latvia (a permanent part of theories about the Russian agression in the region).
Latvia is blacklisting Russian names
The Latvian Ministry of Justice has issued a legislative proposal, prescribing Latvian citizens to give their children Lativan first and last names only. The law says first and last names are to be officially banned, if they do not meet the requirements of the Latvian language or “cause obstacles” to the integration in Latvian society.
Thus, if parents decide to choose a Russian name for their child (Examples: Kyrill, Gavriil), these names can not be registered. 500,000 Russians, 40% of the country’s total population, is apparently happy to face such an intolerance towards their native language and cultural identity from the Latvian government.
Despite being an obvious violation of human rights, the Latvian government argues that it’s an acceptable measure and will help to defend the Latvian independence from the so-called Russian agression. Big bad Russians will come and dub your citizens with Russian names. Defend yourself!
Latvia is expected to begin to examine the bill by September 1.
Latvia bans independent Russian-speaking media outlet “Zarya”
The Russians-speaking media outlet “Zarya” (http://zarya.lv/) was shut down on on May 16, 2016 after a year of pressure from the Latvian government. Zarya was launched by a ground of like-minded persons on March 16, 2016 and collected about 210,000 views during the year. Zarya pusrued the goal to provide an independent view on the situation in Latvia and defend the interests of the Russian speaking population of the country.
Latvian secret services to blame the media outlet for links with the Russian government. When these attempts are failed, the Latvian authorities denied to register Zarya as a legal media outlet because of its editorial policy is contrary to the attitude of the government. Zarya’s deputy editor, Hilarion Giers, says that the outlet has been pushed to stop the work because the Zarya team just does not have enough resources to operate in such a hostile environment.
Russian state-run media outlets such Sputniknews also face pressure in Latvia. In 2016, the website of international news agency Sputnik was blocked in the Latvian domain .lv in 2016. The Russian Foreign Ministry called Riga’s actions “nothing less than censorship.” However, Riga is not interested in comments of the Russian government.
Does the government, that oppresses 40% of its population, have reasons to fear mass protests and rebelion? Apparently, Riga believes that no, and the only possible reason of instability and economic collapse is Putin’s KGB agents among the Latvian citizens.