Weekly: Political Activist Sent to Mental Hospital For Duration of Obama Visit (7)
Weekly Eesti Ekspress reported that Meelis Kaldalu, a gonzo activist associated with theatrical stunts and grandstanding, was picked up by police and sent to a mental hospital for 36 hours, coinciding with the visit of US President Barack Obama to Tallinn on September 3.
According to Ekspress, the chain of events was that Kaldalu posted a satirical poem on the eve of the visit, on the Delfi site's comments. On September 2, he was roused by police in his Tartu home and taken to Tallinn for screening at a Paldiski maantee psychiatric hospital, where he had once in the past, according to Ekspress, been declared not of sound mind.
Ekspress said its police sources told them that he was detained so "the crazy guy wouldn't cause problems." The official version stated by police was that Kaldalu was suspected of forging the signature of Anna-Maria Galojan, a disgraced politician on the lam from Estonian authorities in Britain.
The weekly said he was released around the same time that Obama flew out of Tallinn.
Kaldalu has made a name for himself for refusing to shake First Lady Evelin Ilves's hand at an Independence Day reception, crashing the stage at the Copenhagen Eurovision contest, and allegedly stealing a laptop from a government building to point up what he said was weak security.
The Ekspress report resonated on social media. Marek Strandberg, a politician, quipped on Facebook: "I guess they saved Kaldalu from a sniper's bullet on humanitarian grounds. Yet it would have been in everyone's interests to test the securty systems."