The History of the Jews in Latvia dates back to the first Jewish colony established in Piltene in 1571. Jews contributed to Latvia's development until the Northern War (1700–1721), which decimated Latvia's population. The Jewish community reestablished itself in the 18th century, mainly through an influx from Prussia, and came to play a principal role in the economic life of Latvia.
Under an independent Latvia, Jews formed political parties and participated as members of parliament. The Jewish community flourished. Jewish parents had the right to send their children to schools using Hebrew as the language of instruction, as part of a significant network of minority schools.
World War II ended the prominence of the Jewish Community. Under Stalin, Jews, who formed only 5% of the population, constituted 12% of the deportees. This paled in comparison to the Holocaust, which killed 90% of Latvia's Jewish population.
Today's Jewish community traces its roots to survivors of the Holocaust, Jews who fled to the USSR to escape the Nazi invasion and later returned, and to Jews newly immigrated to Latvia from the Soviet Union. The Latvian Jewish community today is small but active.
Other articles related to "latvian jews, latvian, jews":
... On June 11–17, 1993, the First World Congress of Latvian Jews was held in Riga ... The delegates of the World Congress of Latvian Jews who came to Biķernieki to commemorate the 46,500 Latvian Jews shot there, were shocked by the sight of swastikas and ... of antisemitic content appeared in the Latvian nationalist press ...
... civil administration composed of local collaborationist elements was also established, to which Latvian general councillors were appointed ... Their nominal head was Oskars Dankers, a former Latvian army general ... of Latvia, including several thousand Jews, were deported by the Soviet authorities to Siberia and other parts of Soviet Asia as politically undesirable elements ...
Famous quotes containing the word jews:
“Seventy-five million Jews deported or murdered, thats cleansing. I admire such thoroughness, such methodical patience! When one has no character, one must have a method.”
—Albert Camus (19131960)