Baltic Timeline

  • 2002-09-19
Ten years ago

The Estonian political party Fatherland wins the most seats in Estonia's parliamentary elections this week with 29. The party also supports the presidential bid of former Estonian Foreign Minister Lennart Meri. The Parliament is expected to help Meri capture the presidency in coming days.

The heads of state of Latvia and Lithuania join other international leaders in New York to address the 47th session of the U.N. General Assembly in late September. Estonian Foreign Minister Jaan Manitski, Chairman of Latvia's Supreme Council Anatolijs Gorbunovs and head of the Supreme Council of Lithuania Vytautas Landsbergis go to drum up world support for ending Russia's military occupation in the Baltics.

Latvia's national soccer team again shocks fans by tying Olympic champions Spain 0-0 in a World Cup qualifying match in Riga. The upset tie comes just a few weeks after the Latvian squad tied Denmark, the European champions, 0-0 in a World Cup qualifier.

Five years ago

A gunman kills seven people Sept. 20 in a potato field before shooting himself near the Latvian town of Iecava, leaving the nation in shock after the biggest single mass murder in recent history.

Yuri Chubarov, 47, shot dead seven of his neighbors, five men and two women, and injured the eighth with two automatic hunting rifles in an apparent revenge attack. Chubarov's body was found in a forest about two kilometers from the shooting scene in a cave.

Police have detain the fourth person who may have participated in the bombing attack of the World War II Victory monument in Riga June 6. Police decline to release the suspect's name, age and to say whether he is a member of the radical nationalist organization Perkonkrusts as some media reports speculated. Three people have already been charged for involvement in the monument bombing.

Without waiting for the official opening of the Lithuanian presidential campaign, candidate Arturas Paulauskas presents his electoral platform Sept. 19. He promises to be a representative of all Lithuanian citizens, allow the population to live affluently and feel secure and help farmers become the true owners of their land.

Latvian officials accuse Lithuania of unfair competition over Butinge Nafta oil terminal construction but Lithuania rejects suggestions about possible negative ecological impacts Butinge could bring. Latvian Prime Minister Guntars Krasts said he had some concerns last week about Butinge terminal's ecological impact on the Latvian sea-shore.

The Latvian Greens are planning protest pickets at Lithuania's Embassy in Riga and banks financing Butinge construction, according to the daily Lietuvos Rytas. Lithuanian Prime Minister Gediminas Vagnorius tried to appease Latvians at his press conference on Sept. 18. "The official position of the Latvian administration is much more moderate." Vagnorius said. "Lithuania cannot agree that issues of competition be resolved by enlisting the aid of the Greens."