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Latvia, authorities call for transforming house basements into shelters

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The Latvian authorities appealed to their compatriots to transform basements and other underground rooms of their houses into air raid shelters. The appeal was made out of fear of Russia, on the occasion of the traditional day of cleaning and tidying up the country.

Latvia, an EU and NATO member, has a 214 km long border with Russia. As AFP writes, the government in Riga fears that if Russia wins in the war with Ukraine, their country will become one of Moscow's first next targets.

“We call on everyone to make every effort during the big clean-up, but also afterwards, to ensure that your basements and other underground rooms can serve as shelters in emergencies,” appealed the mayor of Riga, Vilnis Kirsis.

In an entry posted on the X platform, Kirsis wrote that “during the great clean-up, service workers cleaned and adapted, among others, the basements in the 49th high school in Riga.”

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He added that city service employees will undertake similar work in city-owned premises at this time.

Inspection of “basements of public buildings, schools, nursing homes and hospitals”

The head of Riga's civil defense commission, Gints Reinson, said that the authorities would inspect “basements of public buildings, schools, nursing homes and hospitals” to see if they could be used as shelters “in the event of an attack.”

According to the Latvian television channel TV24, approximately 100 shelters are to be prepared each month by the end of the year. In March this year, Latvian Prime Minister Evika Silina warned against the unpredictable actions of Russia, which she compared to an “alcoholic or drug addict.”

Main photo source: RigasDome/X

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