Latvia Weekly-logo

Latvia Weekly

News & Politics Podcasts >

A weekly podcast that discusses the latest happenings in Latvia, hosted by Otto Tabuns and Joe Horgan

A weekly podcast that discusses the latest happenings in Latvia, hosted by Otto Tabuns and Joe Horgan
More Information




A weekly podcast that discusses the latest happenings in Latvia, hosted by Otto Tabuns and Joe Horgan




(+371) 29814099


LW #50: Budget Bagged and Delivered and News from October 11th - 16th, 2019

As they celebrate their 50th episode with a new theme song by sports correspondent Jorens Šteinhauers, Otto and Joe discuss the topsy-turvy week that Latvia's ministers had, with Finance Minister Jānis Reirs handing in the 2020 budget, Education Minister Ilga Šuplinska surviving a vote of no confidence and continuing her fight against Univeristy of Latvia rector Indriķis Muižnieks, Environment and Regional Development Minister Juris Pūce giving more way on regional reform, and Defense...


LW #49: A Bad Week for (Former) Mayors and News from October 3rd - 10th, 2019

With Otto busy preparing for the important yearly Riga Conference, Joe covers domestic drama such as the arrest of former Mayor of Daugavpils Rihards Eigims, renewed charges against current Mayor of Jurmala Gatis Truksnis, a football match fixing scandal, a possible solution to Rīga's trash problem, and much more! Otto and Joe did get a chance to discuss some major international stories together such as President Levits' visit to Estonia and Latvia's Brexit position, and Jöran and Oliver...


LW #48: Minister Šuplinska's Rough Week and News from September 25th - October 2nd, 2019

This jam packed episode starts with a slate of bad news for Minister of Education Ilga Šuplinska and her Jaunā konservatīva partija but hardly ends there, with major stories including changes to citizenship law, a worrisome climate study, dramas both backstage at the legendary Dailes Theater and on Ķekava City Council, minimum income and pension increases, and the introduction of Burger King to the Baltic States. Segments also include a call to Daugavpils, Latvia Sports Weekly with Jöran and...


LW #47: Calling Liepāja and News from September 18th - 24th, 2019

Otto and Joe make a call to new Liepāja resident Kris Akenfelds to discuss newly announced plans for increased rail service to "the city where wind was born," while sports correspondents Jöran and Oliver call in to discuss the latest happenings in Latvian football. Major stories discussed this week include updates to the kindergarten food poisoning scandal, a potential major development in language policy, a change of tack for Rīga's new mayor, Baltic Unity Day, and much more! Opening and...


LW# 46: A Change of Seasons and News from September 12th - 17th, 2019

Otto and Joe are back together in Jelgava to discuss a fickle forecast for both the weather here in Latvia and the Krišjānis Kariņš-led government as autumn has arrived in dramatic fashion. Meanwhile, sports correspondents Jöran and Oliver retell an exciting KHL hockey match between Dinamo Rīga and Amur Khabarovsk. Other topics this week include the Baltic states' first solar farm, good and bad news for the country's economic outlook, tragic food poisoning in Sigulda, and Latvia's bid at...


LW #45: Budging Budget and News from September 3rd to September 11th, 2019

Listen to Otto covering the battles over the budget, new parties getting a stronger hold, trashy tango in the capital, presidential and vice-presidential talks, topical history and future events and more. Surprise sports correspondents join in to cover the downs and ups of the national athletes. Opening and closing music by Anna Veisa


LW #44: Back to School in Jelgava and News from August 28th - September 2nd, 2019

Happy first day of school to Latvia's students and teachers! In honor of the new year, Joe is joined by one of his new colleagues and two of his media club students at Jelgava Spidola State Gymnaisum to discuss some of the changes taking place in education this year, as well as the top stories of the week including a new step towards municipal reform, fire safety violations, and a list by CNN of the top 11 destinations to see in Latvia. Start the new school year right, and don't be late for...


LW #43: Baltic Brotherhood and News from August 19th - 27th, 2019

Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia celebrate 30 years since the important "Baltic Way" protest against Soviet occupation while Rīga inaugurates its third(!) mayor of 2019, PNB Bank's owner sues to stay open, and the Kariņš government tepidly supports Minister of Education Ilga Šuplinska (JKP) in her ongoing conflict with the University of Latvia. Otto and Joe not only discuss these stories and more, but also check in with correspondent Kris Akenfelds to see how his first month living in Liepāja...


LW #42: PNB (Norvik) Bank Shutdown and News from August 12th - 18th, 2019

Joe and Otto are back in Rīga to celebrate the annual city festival and discuss the ECB's sudden closure of PNB Bank (formerly Norvik) as well as major updates to long-running stories such as the road to a new Mayor of Rīga, a compromise in regional reform, increased heat in the showdown between the University of Latvia and Minister of Education Ilga Šuplinska, and much more! Opening and closing music by Anna Veisa Weather theme: Smooth Jazz (am) by Backing Track Ninja Source:...


LW Interviews: Latvian Holocaust Historian Richards Plavnieks

The Holocaust will always be one of the darkest chapters of Latvian history, and it is up to historians like Richards Plavnieks, Assistant Professor of History at Florida Southern College, to chronicle this painful period. Joe sits down with Dr. Plavnieks to discuss his work studying the infamous "Arājs Kommando" as well as his experiences growing up as a Latvian-American on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean.


LW #41: City Council Countdown and News from August 6th - 11th, 2019

With time ticking before an August 20th deadline set by opposition parties, in which Rīga City Council must agree upon a new mayor or face extraordinary elections, former Mayor Nils Ušakovs phones in from Brussels with an offer that key independent councillors seem eager to refuse. Joe and Otto discuss potential stalemate-breaking scenarios as well as a scandal-plagued bridge, a showdown over the University of Latvia rector's election, a major win for Latvian beach volleyball, and a fake...


LW #40: Happy Birthday to Latvian Railways and News from July 30th - August 5th, 2019

Otto has returned to Latvia to celebrate a major anniversary with Joe! No, not the show's 40th episode, but the 100th birthday of Latvijas Dzelceļš, the country's rail authority! Other topics of discussion include major updates to the Kariņš government's plans, a drought in the south of Kurzeme, a new US ambassador to Latvia, and a bridge that belongs to no one in desperate need of repairs. Opening and closing music by Anna Veisa Weather theme: Smooth Jazz (am) by Backing Track Ninja Source:...


LW Presents: Akenfelds on the Road Pt. 2 — Cycling through Eastern Latvia

After 58 days and over 1500 km of cycling, Latvian-Australian Kris Akenfelds has brought his journey across Latvia to a close and joins Joe once again in Jelgava to tell stories from the eastern half of his journey as well as some of his major takeaways from spending summer all throughout the Latvian countryside. Photo Credit: Ivo Kruusamägi Opening and closing music: Bicycle - Reunited by Kevin MacLeod is licensed under a...


LW #39: Public Radio Predicaments and News from July 23rd - 29th, 2019

With Otto and Olevs still away in America, recently returned cross-country cyclist and regular contributor Kris Akenfelds sits down with Joe to discuss more trouble at Latvijas Radio, the country-wide blocking of a Russian news portal, countryside residents' opinions of regional reform, and whether to regulate parking of the newly popular electric scooters.


LW Interviews: Latvian Debate Association Members Rasmuss Filips Geks and Edgars Klētnieks

With debate season in full swing back in his home country of America, Joe sat down this week with Latvian Debate Association "Quo Tu Domā?" board members Rasmuss Filips Geks and Edgars Klētnieks to discuss bringing critical thinking to the classroom, building logical arguments, evaluating information sources and much more. Take a break from arguing with your Facebook friends for an hour to listen in and improve your debating skills today! Opening and closing music by Austra Apsīte


LW #38: JKP's "Yellow Card" and News from July 15th - 22nd, 2019

As the New Conservative Party (JKP) signals that their willingness to cooperate with the rest of the Kariņš government coalition is running low, the government searches for a solution to the Latvian Radio funding crisis. Otto phones in from Washington DC to discuss these topics with Joe and much more, including a possible rise to minimum wage, a Latvian national being held captive by Iran, and great news for Latvia's rail network. All this, plus a final check-in from Latvian-Australian...


LW Interviews: Freelance Journalist Anna Ūdre

For the first interview episode in some time, Joe sat down with freelance journalist and voice of "The Baltic Reports" podcast Anna Ūdre to discuss a wide range of topics including the pros and cons of working as a freelancer in Latvia, the relationship between politicians and media, the role of advertising in funding public media, and much more!


LW #37: Bribes, Broken Bikes, and News from July 10th - 14th, 2019

Despite the short amount of time between episodes, there was plenty for Joe to discuss with Otto in his first time back on the show this month, with developments in the Baiba Broka bribery case, threats by Jaunā konservatīvā partija to sack Rīga city council altogether, major economic statistics released for the first half of 2019, and much more! They were even finally able to finally call Latvian-Australian cross-country cyclist Kris Akenfelds to hear about his latest adventures and...


LW #36: Levits Inaugurated, Broka in Custody, and News from July 3rd - 10th, 2019

After more than a month as "president-elect," Mr. Egils Levits was finally handed the keys to Rīga castle by outgoing President Raimonds Vējonis. On the other side of town, former Nacionālā apvienība mayoral candidate Baiba Broka spent time in very different accommodation — a jail cell in Čiekurkalns after being detained by KNAB agents over bribery allegations. Join Olevs and Joe as they break down these developments and others including major passenger rail contracts, new initiative...


LW #35: Ušakovs Under Investigation and News from June 27th - July 2nd, 2019

As if there wasn't enough political drama this week with KNAB announcing a status of "suspect" for former Mayor Nils Ušakovs just days before assuming his duties as an EU parliamentarian, the resignation of the entire temporary supervisory board of Latvenergo as well as major developments in the ongoing green energy subsidy corruption debacle certainly kept things interesting. Join Joe and Olevs as they take you through these stories and more, including yet another pothole in the road...