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Latvia builds monument to German soldiers at former death camp-2

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RIGA, September 25 (RIA Novosti) - Work on a monument to German soldiers who died in WWII is underway at the site of a former death camp in the small Latvian city of Salaspils, the Salaspils Vestis paper said on Thursday.

The city of Salaspils, located 18 km (11 miles) to the southeast of Latvia's capital Riga, was home to the WWII Stalag-350-s camp for Soviet prisoners of war.

The newspaper said that the construction of the monument was being financed by the administration of the German city of Bremen.

According to documents presented at the Nuremberg Trials, over 100,000 people, including children, were killed at the Nazi death camp. Torture and 'medical experiments' were common.

Galina Mushtavinskaya, an activist from a pro-Russian movement in Latvia, said that surviving Salaspils death camp inmates regard the monument as "an outrage" and "an insult."

Juris Vrublevskis, the director of the Salaspils memorial camp, denied however that a monument was being built to commemorate German soldiers.

"No one is going to erect a monument to German soldiers on the territory of the former death camp," he said. "Work is currently underway near the Salaspils memorial to landscape a cemetery containing 256 German soldiers who perished after the war in a Soviet camp for German prisoners of war located in the same place."

Russia has repeatedly drawn the EU's attention to what it calls Estonia and Latvia's attempts to glorify Nazi Germany. It has also spoken out against their "discriminatory policies" with regard to ethnic Russians resident in the two former Soviet republics.

In spring of this year, Riga hosted a march by Waffen SS veterans, which involved over 200 Latvian Legion veterans and their supporters. The march passed through Riga under tight police security, and commemorated Latvians who had fought for the Nazis during WWII.

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