Memorandum of the Latvian Central Council, 17 March, 1944


The Latvian Central Council was created on March 13, 1943, by representatives of Latvia’s largest prewar political parties. Latvia had gained its independence from Russia at the end of World War I, but in June 1940 the country was occupied by the Red Army and in August 1940 it was forcibly incorporated into the Soviet Union. In June 1941, Nazi Germany invaded the Soviet Union and by July of that year it had overrun Latvia and incorporated the country into Germany’s eastern empire. Latvians resisted both Soviet and German occupation and sought to restore their independence. On March 17, 1944, 189 Latvian political leaders and public figures signed the Memorandum of the Latvian Central Council, which declared the urgent need to restore the de facto sovereignty of the Republic of Latvia and create a Latvian government. The memorandum was a call to resist the reoccupation of Latvia by the Soviet Union following the defeat of Germany, which by that time was widely expected. The memorandum was drawn up in several original copies and photographically reproduced with the aim of taking it out of Latvia and getting it into the hands of the governments of the Western allies. Shown here is the only known original of the memorandum.

Date Created

Subject Date


Title in Original Language

Latvijas Centrālās Padomes Memorands. Rīga, 1944. gada 17. marts


Type of Item

Physical Description

15 pages ; 37 x 23 centimeters

Last updated: May 11, 2015