The third round of Russian-Latvian border delimitation talks, just held in Riga, stumbled against the Russian side’s refusal to acknowledge the validity of the 1920 Russian-Latvian peace treaty from the standpoint of international law, and the continuity of Latvian statehood during the Soviet occupation period. Moscow’s delegation also rejected as "interference in Russia’s internal affairs" the Latvian side’s proposal to discuss compensation for Latvian property expropriated in Abrene (today Pytalovo) district. That Latvian area of 1,300 square kilometers was annexed to the Russian Federation following the Soviet occupation of Latvia–an event described by the Russian delegation as "Latvia joining the USSR." (BNS, Itar-Tass, November 1) The situation parallels the Estonian-Russian border talks, which mark time not because of territorial disputes but because the Russian side considers the Soviet occupation of Estonia to have invalidated the 1920 Russian-Estonian peace treaty.
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