Republic of Latvia
Note: Following a series of scandals, the government led by Prime Minister Aigars Kalvítis resigned on December 5, 2007. Potential candidates for prime minister included the regional development and local government minister, Edgars Zalans, of the ruling People’s Party. No new cabinet had been announced at the time of writing.
Political Status: Absorption of independent state by the Soviet Union on August 5, 1940, repudiated by the Latvian Supreme Council on May 4, 1990; resumption of full sovereignty declared August 21, 1991, and accepted by USSR State Council on September 6.
Area: 24,938 sq. mi. (64,589 sq. km.).
Population: 2,377,383 (2000C); 2,287,000 (2006E).
Major Urban Centers (2005E): RIGA (715,000), Daugavpils (110,000), Liepaja (85,000).
Official Language: Latvian.
Monetary Unit: Lats (official rate November 2, 2007: 1 lats = $2.06US). ...