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President of Estonia Kersti Kaljulaid: Estonia is working to reduce tensions in the Middle East

President of Estonia Kersti Kaljulaid: Estonia is working to reduce tensions in the Middle East © Mattias Tammet/Office of the President

09.01.2020

This morning, the President, Prime Minister, Defense and Foreign Ministers and Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Parliament met in Kadriorg to discuss the conflict in the Middle East, Estonia's positions and next steps. It was agreed that Estonia will continue to work towards reducing tensions.

“The conflict that has erupted in recent days concerns us directly and Estonia is making its contribution to ease tensions. It is also our responsibility – Estonia is a member of the UN Security Council, a member of the European Union, our troops are in Iraq. We must cooperate with other countries through all channels to mitigate the conflict and to prevent a full-scale military confrontation,” said President Kersti Kaljulaid after the meeting.

The Head of State also strongly condemned Iran's missile attacks against allied military bases in Iraq tonight. “Iran has in recent decades repeatedly acted aggressively and has not respected international law. The country's behavior has been a threat to international security and to our allies. This threat is not theoretical, but has repeatedly materialized, which has also triggered a strong reaction from the United States. We support our ally,”said President Kaljulaid.

As of today, there are seven Estonian servicemen in Iraq and their missions are continuing. However, according to President Kaljulaid, it is important that future decisions about these missions would be made by allies in a joint and coordinated manner. Similarly, the greatest possible unity between the members of the European Union is important in these matters, and the further Estonian activities were agreed upon to coordinate this communication.

This morning, at the invitation of President Kersti Kaljulaid, Prime Minister Jüri Ratas, Defense Minister Jüri Luik, Foreign Minister Urmas Reinsalu and Chairman of the Parliamentary Foreign Affairs Committee Enn Eesmaa met in Kadriorg to discuss the conflict that has broken out between Iran and the United States. At the meeting, Minister of Defense Luik gave an overview of the recent developments, also information was exchanged on interaction with foreign partners to date. The Head of State also discussed the situation,  Estonian positions and actions in the UN Security Committee with the ministers and foreign committee chairman.

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