Eesti in brief - 2006-10-18

  • 2006-10-18
President Toomas Hendrik Ilves undertook his first diplomatic trip last week, visiting Finnish President Tarja Halonen. The two heads of states have been friends for nearly 10 years, and Halonen once visited Ilves' family farm in southern Estonia. The presidents discussed Estonia's ascension to NATO, a security group that Ilves believes all Baltic sea nations should join. Ilves said he hoped Finland would consider joining NATO, but said "every country will decide itself what the best solution for its security is." Both Ilves and Halonen were Social Democrat politicians before entering their respective roles.

Security Police seized a large amount of explosives, guns, grenades and ammunition and arrested five people in a raid last week. Police said surveillance work led to the raid in East Viru County. The five suspects were allegedly found with nearly 22 kilograms of different explosives, 22 detonators, five hand grenades, two grenade detonators and fuses. They were arrested and charged with illegally handling explosives, ammunition and firearms. Four were kept in detention, and one was released on bail conditions.

A man was arrested outside a Tallinn school and charged with attempting to hold a pupil ransom for one million kroons (63,898 euros). The man, identified only as "Indrek," had drawn up plans of where to hide the child and how to contact the family, police said. "As a matter of fact, the parents weren't outstandingly rich," a police spokesman said. " Plus, the man failed to contact the family of the child," the spokesman said. No other school children were harmed.