The National Defense Committee gave its backing on Nov. 5 to bills that would extend the participation of Estonian troops in missions in Iraq, Afghanistan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Kosovo by 12 months. The government approved the bills in mid-October. Meanwhile, the opposition People's Union called for Estonia to end its mission in Iraq so that the nation's military can focus on its main mission in Afghanistan. The party also said it was necessary to pay more attention to civilian cooperation to improve the current situation surrounding the Iraq war.
Legendary American filmmaker and artist David Lynch arrived in Tallinn on Nov. 6. The director of "Twin Peaks," "Mulholland Drive," "Eraserhead," and "Blue Velvet" is visiting at the invitation of film director Veiko Ounpuu and actor Taavi Eelmaa. As The Baltic Times went to press on Nov. 7, Lynch was preparing to hold a public lecture titled "Film, Creativity and Consciousness" at the Kosmos Cinema.
The Central Criminal Police announced that they have detained a group suspected of running 30 Estonian cocaine traffickers who were caught in Europe and Latin America over the past year, Postimees reports. The alleged masterminds were arrested several weeks ago, but the police and the prosecutor's office had so far kept the case under wraps. The traffickers were given tens of thousands of kroons in one-off payments to smuggle between one and seven kilograms of the drug.
Prime Minister Andrus Ansip on Nov. 1 said he does not support the idea, posed by his fellow Reform Party member Silver Meikar, of boycotting the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games. "I do not even consider this idea to be worth considering," said Ansip at a government press conference. Two days earlier MP Silver Meikar published an opinion article claiming that if China didn't improve its human rights situation in the coming months, Estonia should not participate in the games. The head of Estonia's Olympic Committee has also condemned the idea of a boycott.