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TWO STORIES OF MEMORIES AND HOPE. Celebrating lost and returning people in Riga. Pt.1

Riga is celebrating its 818th birthday this weekend. The city's inhabitants have faced various tides of times: Riga slowly grew as an urban village through medieval times and plagues, then exploded during the industrial era 50 years prior to WWI, lost dozens of thousands during WWII to reach three times its size during the Soviet era. In the last 30 years, due to returning to ethnic grounds, work migration, the crisis, or downshifting to smaller towns, Riga has shrunk by 300,000 people. Criticized by some, many are returning back to the city with more impressive experience and different views to what Riga is today. We celebrate the birthday our hometown by celebrating memories and hope of its lost and recently found citizens, and give you the first part of this article series.

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