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Sunday, 11.12.2016, 15:51
Estonian politicians don’t hope for great results of meeting between Ilves and Medvedev
President Ilves and Evelin Ilves are participating in the 5th World Congress of Finno-Ugric Peoples in Western Siberia, in Khanty-Mansi. In the framework of the congress, a meeting between Ilves and Medvedev is scheduled for Saturday where the two heads of State can discuss important matters pertaining to relations between Estonia and Russia as well as between the European Union and Russia, writes Postimees/LETA.
Ansip stated. However, that instead of Russia, Estonia should pay much more attention to the Nordic countries. “Our economic interests are foremost linked with Finland and Sweden and the success of our economy is several times more dependent on the development of our relations with Finland and Sweden than on the developments in our relations with Russia,” he stated.
The Prime Minister added that nevertheless Estonia wants to have neighbourly and partner-like or pragmatic relations with all of its neighbours, including with Russia.
Chairman of the Riigikogu Committee on European Union Affairs Marko Mihkelson stated in his weblog that the success of the meeting will depend on the Russian side’s preparedness to deal with all problems without linking them to other issues, but he was not very optimistic on the outcome of the meeting. “The activities and statements of Medvedev himself during the past few days has demonstrated that he is not in the least ready for constructive behaviour in the sensitive issues in the Estonian-Russian relations, such as Estonia’s citizenship policy or the matters concerning the Second World War,” he wrote.
Minister of foreign affairs of Estonia Urmas Paet said that Estonian side is prepared to deal with all issues at the meeting. “We see that unfortunately the past few years have been such where not all options have been used, mostly due to the lack of willingness. I certainly do not consider it normal that contacts on such a high level between the leaders of neighbouring countries are so rare,” noted Paet.
The director of the Centre of International Defence Studies Kadri Liik said that she does not expect much from the meeting. According to her, the fact that the meeting will take place is in itself newsworthy as there are rarely that such events take place, but it will be rather more interesting which will be the contact that the presidents will achieve.