22:31 GMT +320 November 2019
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    A Russian watchtower overlooks the disputed territories close to Pitalova region, near Vilaka, Latvia. (File)

    Baltic Bastion: Latvia Building 171-Mile Fence on Border With Russia

    © AP Photo / AFI, Reinis Traidas
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    As anti-migrant hysteria sweeps the world, little Latvia has rushed to fence itself off from its surrounding neighbors, constructing nine-foot high walls around its periphery.

    RIGA (Sputnik) — Latvia has constructed a 14-mile fence along the 171-mile border with Russia for protection against illegal migrants entering the European Union, additional 37 miles will be constructed in 2017, the country's State Border Guard spokeswoman Jevgenija Poznaka said Saturday.

    “The construction was started back in 2015, and we are planning to finish it by 2019. Forty miles of the border zone was built up, and the 14-mile fence was constructed,” Poznaka told journalists.

    The Delfi news agency reported last March that Riga received nearly $2 million from Brussels for constructing the first part of the wall, a 15-mile section.

    In 2017, Latvia allocated 6.3 million euros ($6.8 million) for the construction of the 37 miles of fence and 93 miles of border zone, the spokeswoman stated.

    Media reported that the minimum height of the fence, including the barbed wire, will reach almost nine feet. It is expected to be constructed along some 120 miles of the border.

    Latvian official have also included in the country's 2017 budget funds for construction of a similar fence on the border with Belarus. State Border Guard Chief Gen. Normunds Garbars hasn't provided details on the length and cost of the planned wall.

    Latvia was not the only state that decided to fence it off from neighbors.

    Norwegian authorities have decided to erect a gated fence at the only checkpoint on the border with Russia in a bid to prevent a new wave of migrants crossing in, while the Estonian government has approved the building of a 2.5-meter fence on its border with Russia as the latest measure aimed at fortifying Estonia’s part of EU outer borders.


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