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Tuesday 19.06.2018 | Name days: Nils, Viktors
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Latvian politicans are active Twitter users

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In Latvia, Twitter is one of three social media platforms that are actively used by local politicians. There is also social network draugiem.lv, which is the most popular in Latvia and is a local alternative to Facebook.

The Twitter profile of the President of Latvia was registered on July 7, 2010 under President Valdis Zatlers. Tweets were written by his communication staff and tweets by the former President were signed VP, meaning «Valsts Prezidents» (State President in Latvian). Most of tweets are about the President’s daily duties – visits, decisions, proposals, opinion. President Zatlers often entered in dialogue with his followers. Since Andris Berzins became president on 8 July 2011, the communication became rarer with only 73 tweets compared to 430 tweets the year before. The current president does not write tweets himself any more. The most popular tweet was written under President Zatlers: «If 10,000 signatures are collected for publishing the real beneficiaries of offshore companies, then the president will submit this initiative to parliament.»

Latvian Prime Minister Valdis Dombrovskis joined Twitter on 24 May 2009. Almost half of the tweets of the Prime Minister are retweets including retweets of other government accounts such as tweets from the Cabinet of Ministers (@Brivibas36), as well as the media coverage about his work. From his personal tweets, the highest number of retweets was for greetings – on the occasion of national holidays or congratulations to Latvian athletes, or condolences to victims of tragic events like the terror act in Norway or the air crash of the Lokomotiv hockey team, as well as tweets on the Language referendum – against Russian as the second official language. His most popular tweet is a photo of actor Jackie Chan wearing a hat of Latvian folk hero Lāčplēsis, a gift from the Prime Minister: «I conveyed greetings from the legendary Lāčplēsis to Jackie Chan and invited him to come back to shoot the continuation of his film! http://t.co/QUQKdthz»

The official account of the Latvian government keeps its followers abreast of the government’s activities and current events not only related to politics, but also to charity and other social movements. The activities of Prime Minister Valdis Dombrovskis are often covered including. The account answers questions of its followers but its tweets are not often retweeted. The most popular tweet is the link to the opinion of various economists about the book of Prime Minister Dombrovskis telling how Latvia has overcome economic crisis: «Comments by economy experts on @VDombrovskis book http://ej.uz/ss42. If you RT this, you can get a book. Five winners will be announced tomorrow.»

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