Eesti in brief - 2006-06-28

  • 2006-06-28
The final report on the helicopter crash that killed 14 people near Tallinn last year is likely to be delayed due to lack of information from the U.S. manufacturer. The investigating committee said there was little doubt that last year's crash was the result of a faulty rotor component, and not pilot error, poor weather or a stray bird. But the committee said it was still awaiting information from the helicopter's manufacturer, Sikorsky, which had not yet made the test results available. The Sikorsky S-76C+ plunged into the sea shortly after taking off from Tallinn on Aug. 10, 2005. Its load of 12 passengers and two crew members were bound for Helsinki on a commercial flight operated by Copterline. Tonu Adler, the deputy chairman of the investigation committee, said the manufacturer appeared unwilling to accept that the machine was at fault.

One quarter of Estonians would not want to live next door to a gay person, a survey published in the daily newspaper Postimees revealed. The survey also found that 5 percent of respondents would feel negative about living next door to a black or dark-skinned person. The newspaper commissioned the survey from TNS Emor pollster following the controversy surrounding the departure of the Dutch ambassador to Estonia, who quit his post because his partner, a black man, allegedly suffered harassment and abuse on the streets of Tallinn. At the same time the survey found a large majority of respondents did not believe sexual or racial abuse was widespread. However, 25 percent of the respondents expressed negative attitudes toward having a homosexual neighbor.

Unless Tallinn's living environment becomes more attractive, the city's population could shrink to 264,000 in 2030 's the capita's approximate population half a century ago - the daily Eesti Paevaleht reported, referring to research by the Estonian Institute for Future Studies. Even the most optimistic forecast says the population of Tallinn will drop substantially within the next 24 years. "It would be unrealistic to increase the population of Tallinn, and even maintaining the current population level would be extremely difficult," the director of the institute, Erik Terk, told the daily. In 2000 the population of Tallinn stood at 400,150.

Russian border guards detained two residents from the Estonian city of Narva on June 25 that swam across the River Narva into Russia. A man born in 1961 and a teenage boy 's both citizens of Russia 's illegally crossed the Estonian-Russian border by swimming across the river, officials of Russia's Northwest regional border authority said. The two delinquents were taken to the Sosnovy Bor border station to clear up the incident.