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Change of mindset underway as Estonian parliament adopts agreement on civil society 


The Estonian Civil Society Development Concept became an international success story. Once a participant at an NGO and public officials meeting in Canada slapped his fist on the table and told Canadian officials: "If you can't do it like Estonians, don't do it at all!" Read

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Does Chechen independence stand a chance? 

Author:Ivars Liepnieks

Does the war on terrorism increase global security? It could be said that by eliminating all terrorists, terrorism itself would disappear. But that is not possible as the injustice that has developed of late in the international order will only create new terrorists. Read

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The new anti-corruption strategy – just more paper-pushing? 


Among Latvia’s anti-corruption bodies there is a culture of “institutional envy”– each institution applies its own elastoplast but the patient isn’t getting any better. The National Strategy for Preventing and Combating Corruption attempts, for the first time, to bring together all the elements of an anti-corruption policy in an organized and understandable form. Read

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Natural Racism 

Author:Artis Svece

Comments on the discussion on politika.lv after the interview with George Steele Read

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The Privatized Foreign Policy of Bush and Co. 


The obstinance of the White House casts doubt on exactly how important the three most frequently cited reasons for the looming war with Iraq - terrorism, weapons of mass destruction and human rights – really are. Less frequently debated alternatives seem more logical and believable. In short, the keyword is ‘Oil.’ Read

Article research

The source of recruits for the political elite of Latvia (During the 7th Saeima) 

Author:Gints Klasons (BA)

This Bachelor's thesis, defended in the Social Science department of the University of Latvia's Social Science faculty in June, 2001, analyzes the process of recruiting Latvia's political elite during the 7th Saeima. Read

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"I now live in one of the most racist societies" 


During the 8 years since I have lived here I have not been in prison, or the police, I have not done anything illegal or anything at all to provoke hatred or suspicion. Must I accept racism if it is based on ignorance or fear? No. I have done nothing to provoke such an attitude. Read

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Learn from the positive examples! 


You must move away from the idea that the only way to protect the Latvian language is to exclude the use of other languages. Learn from the positive examples and do not use restrictions like Turkey or Algeria. Read

Article research

Monitoring the EU accession process: minority protection (2002) 



OSI’s two-volume report Monitoring Minority Protection focuses on the situation of vulnerable minority groups in 15 European countries. The first volume of the report concentrates on the ten EU candidate States of Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) and assesses the policies that Governments have developed to improve the situation of the Roma minority in Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia; and to facilitate the integration of Russian-speakers in Estonia and Latvia. This volume follows up on EUMAP’s 2001 Minority Protection Report, which examined the legislative and institutional framework for minority protection in the ten CEE candidate countries. The second volume concentrates on the five largest EU member States, examining the situation of Muslims in France, Italy and the UK, and of Roma in Germany and Spain. This volume was prepared with the intent of underlining that EU standards must be applied and monitored equally throughout the European Union, not only in candidate countries.

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Benign nationalism 


There is nothing unusual about Latvia. You have this ethnic and cultural division at the heart of your country. If it were better managed – the politics of it and the societal aspects of it, it could be one of the things that make people like this country. Diversity is appealing, simplicity is boring. Read