1920 – 1940 Erste Unabhängigkeit - Zeitleiste

Lettland und Estland als unabhängige Republiken.

May 1, 1920
Latvia's first parliament

Latvia's first parliament - constitutional assembly is convened.

January 26, 1921
Latvia and Estonia receives de iure recognition

Latvia and Estonia receive de iure recognition from the Entente Supreme Council.

September 12, 1934
The Baltic Entente is established

The Baltic Entente is established with the aim of strengthening partnerships between Latvia, Estonia and Lithuania.

October 5, 1939
Permission to install Soviet military bases in Latvia

After an ultimatum and military pressure from the Soviet Union, Latvia signed a mutual assistance agreement to allow for the establishment of Red Army military bases in Latvia with 25,000 troops.

Although de iure independent, the Baltic States were now de facto under Soviet control and forced into an alliance that lasted from 1939-1940.


June 12, 1940
USSR air and sea blockade of the Baltic States

The Soviet Baltic naval fleet and air force halted all ship and air traffic from the Baltic States to the West, detaining several trade ships as part of the process.  On June 14, a Soviet military plane shot down a Finnish passenger plane “Kaleva” over the Bay of Finland.

June 17, 1940
Occupation of Latvia by the USSR Army

Massive Soviet forces gathered on the borders of the Baltic States and in military bases inside. A lack of unity among the Baltic States meant that mutual defence plans and co-operation were not in place.  After an ultimatum, Latvia could not mobilise its forces, so head of state Kārlis Ulmanis decided to admit the invaders without a fight. The first Red Army units entered Latvia through Lithuania early on the morning of June 17, reaching Riga around noon to take over strategically important facilities.