Latvija in brief - 2006-07-26

  • 2006-07-26
Specialists have confirmed that a humpback whale was found dead by the Latvian Coast Guard in the Gulf of Riga near Dunte on the north-eastern coast. In the words of Riga Zoo spokesman Ingmars Lidaka, "I must say 's it's a unique case." The representative of the Riga Zoo said the whale is about ten meters long, which is not the maximum length for these animals. Divers wrapped the whale into a net and then pulled the carcass ashore to take it to the Latvian Academy of Agriculture in Jelgava. Representatives of Latvia's Nature Museum said a whale was last seen on Latvia's coast 30 years ago 's in August 1976, when a 14-meter long finnwhale was washed ashore near Kauguri in the Gulf of Riga.

Latvian soldiers serving in Iraq came under fire near Divania, but there were no casualties, the Defense Ministry reported. The Latvians are stationed in military bases in Baghdad and Divania, which haven't seen any incidents in recent days until the soldiers, who are serving on the rapid reaction unit, came under fire near the Divania base. National Armed Forces spokesman Uldis Davidovs said that "the unit had received a report about the base likely to come under fire" and set out to the location from where the shooting might be done. The attackers opened small arms fire, the Latvian troops returned the fire and immediately retreated to the base.

Latvia has pledged to compensate its honorary consul to Lebanon for spending his personal money to provide assistance to Latvians caught up in the zone of military fighting. Foreign Minister Artis Pabriks said Renno A. Gerard spent not only his energy and time, but also his money to help people from Latvia get out of the war zone. Pabriks said banks in Lebanon are issuing no more than $500 at a time to their clients, so the honorary consul shared his personal funds with Latvians who were unable to recover their money.

Latvian doctors performed a penis reattachment surgery for the first time in the history of Latvian medicine, sewing back on a penis that had been fully cut off on a drunken bet, Latvian Television reported last week. Medics of the Gailezers hospital in Riga told the television that so far they had only had the cases of partial penis amputation but this time it had been completely severed and "brought to the hospital in a bag." They said that what had happened was the result of "idiocy" on the part of the patient, who had made a drunken bet with his friends for 1,000 lats (1,400 euros) that he would cut off his penis and did it.