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THE WEEK AHEAD

RIGA : A Question of Rights

June 01, 1993

The Republic of Latvia this weekend holds its first elections since becoming independent from the Soviet Union two years ago.

A total of 23 parties are competing for 100 seats in the Saeima, or new parliament. At least three Californians of Latvian origin are candidates in the elections.

Meanwhile, nearly 40% of Latvian residents--mostly Russians and other Slavs who settled in Latvia after the Soviet takeover--do not currently have citizenship and are hence ineligible to vote.

The new Saeima is to adopt a comprehensive citizenship law that will determine the fate of these ethnic non-Latvians.

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