Dear international students of Riga Technical University,
Today we express solidarity with people of Ukraine in its dark hour, heroically fighting with Russian invaders. More than 30 years ago in similar meetings in Stockholm, Copenhagen and elsewhere friends of the Baltic countries supported our willingness to live in a free and democratic society. Now it is our turn to defend willingness of Ukrainian people to be free, to defend their democratically elected structures against a brutal military force.
Many of us have friends in Ukraine, in Universities of Ukraine. There are Ukrainian students at the RTU. We will support them by all available means.
In the same time we are safe in Latvia as a member of the NATO and the European Union. As NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said that “Russia’s attack on Ukraine has shattered peace in Europe … the alliance would defend “every inch” of its members’ territory”.
For us it means that people in Latvia can feel safe – just as people in the United States, the United Kingdom, Germany, France or any other NATO member state.
There are no worries of financial or energy shortages. Latvia produces large part of electricity needed, and we have sufficient gas reserves for this year. Latvia is a part of the Eurozone.
In the same time the EU air space is closed for Russian planes, and students coming to the RTU should be careful with the selection of their flight route.
Today most of the classes have started in physical mode. I truly hope that we have very efficient semester and we will be able to solve problems created by Covid.
I wish you all the best.
Professor Igors Tipans
Deputy Rector, International Cooperation and Studies