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The President of the Republic met the round-the-world voyagers

From the left: Kaido Kama, Tiit Pruuli, Margus Kastehein, Tiit Riisalo, Meelis Saarlaid, Mart Saarso

President Lennart Meri received the main crew members ­ the master Mart Saarso, the mates Meelis Saarlaid, Tiit Riisalo, and Margus Kastehein, and the sailors Tiit Pruuli and Kaido Kama of the "Lennuk", the yacht that had sailed around the world under the Estonian flag, as well as Captain Uno Laur and Captain Vello Mäss, members of the Board of the "Lennuk", in the presidential palace of Kadriorg today.

President Lennart Meri is the patron of the voyage "Estonian Flag Around the World 1999-2000" organised by the deep sea sailing society "Thetis". President Meri begun the meeting by conferring the III Class Order of the Estonian Red Cross on Captain Mart Saarso for his services to the Republic of Estonia and the people of Estonia. The sailors who had circled the world also had a gift for the President – the chart from the yacht's chart collection where the place of entry into the territorial waters of Estonia, near the coast of Saaremaa and Hiiumaa, can be seen.

The President asked the crew for dinner, where the conversation focused on the voyage around the world, on how well the Estonian flag is known around the world, and on the two travel books soon to be published – one by Tiit Pruuli in Estonian and another by Kaido Kama in the Võru language. Also the maritime education possibilities in Estonia and the future of the yacht "Lennuk" were discussed.

Press Service of the Office of the President
Kadriorg, April 5, 2001


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