Estonia delegation visits Bel Air

Harford County Executive David R. Craig, right, presents a gift basket to Ulle Rajaraslu, county governor of Harju, Estonia, during a visit to Bel Air on Thursday. Joining Craig were members of the Office of Economic Development, officials from the Town of Bel Air and other local and state elected officials. Bel Air Mayor Eddie Hopkins is to their left. (Photo courtesy Harford County government / November 13, 2012)

A delegation from Harju County in Estonia visited Bel Air Thursday as part of an effort to expand an international sisters cities exchange program between the Baltic nation and the United States.

The group was hosted by Harford County Executive David R. Craig, who was involved with the sister cities exchange program when he served as mayor of Havre de Grace, according to Bob Thomas, spokesman for county government.

Among their stops locally, the visitors attended a public meeting at the Bel Air Armory, where Craig was joined by members of the Harford Office of Economic Development, representatives from the Town of Bel Air and other local and state elected officials.

Among those visiting from Estonia were Ulle Rajasalu, Harju County governor; Kaarel Kose, division advisor, Harju; and Terje Lillo, advisor to the governor of Harju.

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Rajasalu, as a county governor, holds a position similar to Craig's.

Harju is one of 15 counties in Estonia. Although the county is small in size and population, Harju's population of almost 550,000 is more than double Harford's population and accounts for nearly 40 percent of Estonia's citizens.

Harju also has several municipalities, the largest of which is Tallinn, Estonia's national capital.