VIDEO: Media Sites Clamor to Interview 'Omar' ({{commentsTotal}})

Photo: Photo: ERR

Two Estonian media outlets have conducted more in-depth interviews with 'Omar,' the Pashto interpreter for three successive Estonian infantry companies who recently contacted Estonia seeking protection.

The interviews were conducted in the framework of a recent trip to Kabul by Foreign Minister Urmas Paet. ERR interviewed Omar on its Välisilm program, and the daily newspaper Eesti Päevaleht interviewed him at the same site.

The ERR video, key parts of which are in English and the rest subtitled into English by ERR News, is available on the right side of this article. In it, Omar emphasizes that he is seeking asylum solely for himself, in what is perhaps a bid to allay concerns of a tide of refugees.

Also in the video, the Afghan foreign minister is interviewed on the subject, and Estonian Foreign Minister Urmas Paet makes his second longer comment on the case, which continues to be on hold somewhere between the Foreign Ministry and Defense Ministry. Last week, the Estonian president said: "Estonia has a moral obligation to help those who have helped our units in Afghanistan," but Paet again alluded to a decision not being forthcoming before next year.

In a questionable ethical decision, Eesti Päevaleht chose to run an unedited photo of Omar talking to ERR in its print version - the first time his actual face has appeared.   

The daily posted the same photograph, taken by a Defense League officer, on its website, but later replaced it with a stock photo from the Defense Forces.

Last week, ETV aired a segment containing a phone interview with Omar, following an initial report by ERR News.



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