Russia condemns Nazi veterans' march in Latvia

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Moscow, Mar 17 (UNI) Russia today strongly condemned a march by Waffen SS veterans and their supporters in Riga, the capital of former Soviet Baltic republic of Latvia.

The Nazi veterans' march took place yesterday and involved over 200 Latvian Legion veterans who fought for Nazi during World War II.

''Although Moscow recognises that no Latvian officials attended the march, this does not make this congregation any less disgraceful,'' Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

Moscow regretted the fact that Riga authorities had allowed the march to be held, despite numerous protests from Latvian and international public organisations, it said.

''History, namely the Nuremberg Trials, condemned the fascist organisation Waffen SS and its barbaric crimes,'' the statement noted.

Latvian Legion Day commemorates a battle in March 1944 between the Soviet and German armies on the banks of the Velikaya River, in northwest Russia.

Soviet troops began their assault on March 16, forcing German Waffen-SS divisions to withdraw. However, Latvian troops held their lines and prevented the Soviets from advancing further.

Marches by Latvian Legion veterans and their supporters have been held since 1994.

UNI XC PD GC1854

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