The week finally saw nice summer weather arriving at Estonia, which brought relaxed atmosphere to the country. However, the relations between Estonia and Russia were equally heated as the trial over kidnapped security officer Eston Kohver continued in Pskov.
The latest United Nations population estimates and projections report confirms what's been a concern for a long time – Europe's population is ageing and shrinking. And that includes Estonia. Whereas in 1950, after the Second World War and Soviet deportations, Estonia's population stood at 1.1 million and is 1.3 million now, the country is expected to lose 184,000 people between now and 2050. At 14 percent, the decrease is the 14th highest in the world. By the middle of the century, Estonia's population will be at the same level as 100 years ago, at 1.1 million, and by 2100, just over 900,000, the UN report estimates.
The Swiss-owned cruise ship Viking Star got stuck in Tallinn for five days, with engine trouble stopping it from continuing its journey, leaving over 900 tourists to enjoy an extended stay in Estonia's capital, albeit many wanted to continue their travels sooner. The company eventually hired two jets and flew the passengers from Tallinn to Bergen in Norway.
Four young people died in a worst car crash this year when a 23-year-old drunk driver lost control of an aged Audi A6 and hit a tree in Tartu County. Two 15-year-old girls and two 23-year-old men who were in the car, all died from the impact. It later emerged that the driver and his male friend were heavily intoxicated, causing another debate about drunk driving.
Tallinn Mayor Edgar Savisaar, who had been away from work since late March due to a life-threatening illness, took charge of the Estonian capital again, while resigning as an MP.
NATO announced that the alliance's air policing mission over the Baltics will be cut from 16 to 8 fighter jets, although the cuts will not affect Ämari air base in Estonia where 4 aircraft will remain.
Reports emerged in the Russian media that the Pskov court will publish its ruling, concerning kidnapped Estonian official Eston Kohver, on August 19, one day before Estonia celebrates 24 years since regaining independence from the Soviet Union. Meanwhile, Andrey Kuzhkin, a former administrative head of Tomsk Oblast in Russia, claimed that Kohver had been warned prior to his abduction that his activity in fighting smugglers on the Estonian-Russian border had irritated local powers.
Despite the turbulent relations between Estonia and Russia, a chef from Estonia opened a restaurant with an Estonian touch in Moscow. Head chef Andrei Korobjak, who hails from Estonia, said it is important for the food on offer to have an Estonian touch to it. The restaurant is named Mos, which means a grandmother's kiss in Danish, and is geared towards modern Nordic cooking. “Nordic food is very trendy throughout the world,” co-owner Aleksandr Zaturinsky said, adding that the trend is only now reaching Moscow.
The three-day electronic dance music event Weekend Festival Baltic brought 90,000 visitors to the Estonia's most popular resort town, Pärnu. The festival not only brought world class DJs for the first time to Pärnu, but the country as a whole had not seen an event in this league before. Armin van Buuren, David Guetta and Tiësto made one feel as if they had traveled to Ibiza instead.
Editor: S. Tambur