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July 30, 2007
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Official Estonia, Latvia Call Up Waffen SS Vets
Estonian and Latvian veterans of Waffen SS legions and Forest Brothers met past weekend to be explicitly told by authorities that they count on them when building up national consciousness and defending the homeland.
Some 300 veterans of Estonian 20th Waffen-Grenadier-Division der SS and of other units of Wehrmacht, including a few Waffen SS veterans from Austria and Norway traditionally gathered near Vaivaras Sinimäe, where the battle of Nazi and Soviet Army had been particularly fierce in summer of 1944. This year, the meeting of Waffen SS veterans was secured by big numbers of policemen.

Although not attending the event, Estonian Defense Minister Jaak Aaviksoo greeted participants in absentee. He called on the vets to defend homeland from enemies both from within and without and said the state needs them right now, probably referring to the recent rallies triggered by relocating the bronze statue of WW2 Red Army soldier, the so-called Red Soldier, from downtown Tallinn to a military cemetery.

Nearly at the same time, Latvian Riga hosted the united meeting of SS legionaries and partisans of the Forest Brothers. Accompanies by the police, the activists marched carrying the State Flag of Latvia and the Flag of the National Partisan Association.

Latvian President Valdis Zatlers missed the event, he was on a business trip that day. But Mr Zatlers addressed the veterans in a letter, where he emphasized cooperation of national partisans of Latvia, Estonia and Lithuania and made clear that, nowadays, the nation needs them not only to preserve history but also to build up national consciousness.
www.kommersant.com

All the Article in Russian as of July 30, 2007

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