Country Reports on Terrorism 2007 - Latvia

Latvia's Financial Intelligence Unit continued to maintain a terrorist financing database that it shared with local banks. Since the May 2005 U.S. Treasury designation of two Latvian banks as institutions of "primary money laundering concern" under Section 311 of the Patriot Act, Latvian government and regulatory agencies have worked very closely with the United States to enhance their legislative and regulatory framework. There have been no further sanctions on Latvian banks. In 2006, Treasury lifted the proposed sanction against one bank. In the case of the second bank, the issue is specific to the bank and its ownership structure, and does not reflect Latvian regulatory efforts.

On May 15-16, the counterterrorism exercise "Seajack" was conducted within the NATO international search and rescue exercise "Bold Mercy". Seajack was organized by the Coast Guard Service of the Latvian Naval Force together with the Counterterrorism Center of the Security Police. On October 25, a national exercise was conducted at the International Airport Riga, organized by the Security Police and International Airport Riga in cooperation with the Counterterrorism Unit OMEGA and other Latvian governmental agencies.

Latvia contributed 98 soldiers to support the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan. In October, the team's mandate was renewed for one year and is now scheduled to expire the same day that the UNSCR mission mandate expires (October 23, 2008). In Iraq, Latvia had two officers under Polish command. In December, the Latvian Parliament renewed the authority for Iraq deployment until December 31, 2008.


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