Latvia is a country in north eastern Europe, located on the coast of the Baltic Sea, between Estonia, Russia, Belarus and Lithunia. Riga is the capital and largest city. The country has a small population of 2.3 million people, of whom about 30% speak Russian.
After a brief period of independence between World War I and World War II, Latvia was annexed by the Soviet Union. It regained its freedom on August 21, 1991, and immediately reoriented itself towards the West, joining both NATO and the European Union in 2004.