Vike-Freiberga: Bush's visit symbolizes dual meaning of end of WWII

  • 2005-05-07
RIGA 's President Vaira Vike-Freiberga emphasized that the visit of United States President George W. Bush to Latvia symbolized the dual meaning of the end of the WW II.

Speaking before the U.S. president arrived, she said that Bush's visit has "double meaning." "One of them is victory over Nazism, and the other is victory over the totalitarian communism," she said.

She also noted that Bush's visit marks the United States' efforts to spread democracy throughout the world, which has been set as a goal by Bush for his second term of presidency.

"We stand on the side of all those who want to themselves administer their own affairs," said Vike-Freiberga.

Vike-Freiberga told reporters that while for some European states the end of the WWII meant freedom, for others, including Latvia, it meant oppression under other states' regimes.

Vike-Freiberga said the "true liberation" of Latvia occurred alongside collapse of the Soviet Union. "Those are the events we can celebrate 's two victories. Only when the second victory took place there was a full liberation," she said.

In a declaration she wrote earlier this year and sent to foreign heads of state, Vike-Freiberga said that while she would attend the Victory Day ceremonies May 9 in Moscow the end of the WW II did not bring liberation to Latvia.