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Latvia: President Condemns Monument Bombing

Riga, 11 June 1997 (RFE/RL) - Latvian President Guntis Ulmanis today condemned last week's bombing of a World War Two monument in the capital Riga which killed one person and raised tensions with Moscow.

In a statement, Ulmanis called the incident a provocative and defiant attempt to damage Latvia's international relations. He said ties with Russia are deeper and stronger than those responsible for the blast likely believe them to be. He called for the perpetrators to be brought to justice.

No one has been arrested for the bombing, which heavily damaged the base of the monument erected in 1985 to commemorate the entry of Soviet troops into Riga during fighting with Nazi Germany.

Latvian authorities said yesterday the monument will be repaired.

Moscow reacted angrily to the blast last week. The Russian Foreign Ministry called it a crude provocation and said the response of Latvian officials would reveal their degree of commitment to strong bilateral ties.