On 25 October, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs hosted the signing of the final documents for the demarcation of the state border between Latvia and Russia: Demarcation Map, Description of the Border, Protocols relating to Boundary Markers, Catalogue of the Boundary Marker Coordinates and Altitudes, and Final Protocol. They were signed by the Co-Chairs of the Demarcation Commission – Irina Mangule, Consul General of Latvia in Saint Petersburg, for Latvia, and Alexey Obukhov, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary, for Russia.
The official event was opened by the Foreign Ministry’s State Secretary, Andrejs Pildegovičs, who thanked the Demarcation Commission for the work it has accomplished. He underlined that a legally defined and demarcated state border not only contributes to the strengthening of Latvia’s security; it is also needed in order to effectively tackle illegal immigration and organised crime. The border between Latvia and Russia also being the external border of the European Union, a properly demarcated boundary line is essential for Latvia to fully perform the functions of a member of the Schengen Agreement.
Besides representatives from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Demarcation Commission also included experts from the State Border Guard of Latvia, the Provisions State Agency, the Geospatial Information Agency and the State Land Service.
A major step in sorting out the border-related matters was the Treaty between the Republic of Latvia and the Russian Federation on the State Border of Latvia and Russia signed on 27 March 2007 and taking effect on 18 December of the same year. The first meeting of the Commission convened in Daugavpils on 23 September 2009. Over these years, the Commission has held 33 meetings – 17 of them in Latvia and 16 in Russia. In the course of demarcation, the exact location of the border on the ground was mutually agreed upon and marked by installing boundary markers.
After signing the final documents of the Demarcation Commission, they will be presented to the Governments of both countries for approval, and, following an exchange of notes, the demarcation of the Latvia-Russia border will be completed.
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