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Latvia

The development of the mass media in the territory of Latvia has been substantially influenced by the region’s history: frequent regime changes, wars, and totalitarian and repressive government that, among other things, affected freedom of speech. The independent Republic of Latvia was established in 1918 and survived until 1940, when it was annexed by the Soviet Union. Latvia’s independence as a democratic republic was restored in 1991. Population numbers have shifted from 720,000 in 1800 to 2 million in 1900, 2.4 million in 2000, and 1.93 million in 2018. While 62% of residents speak Latvian at home, 37% speak Russian, and 1% speak another language. This entry provides an overview of media in Latvia, including print, broadcast, and digital media.

Print Media

The beginnings of the press ...

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