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ESTONIA: Kallas: European defense capacity to be key issue for European Parliament

2024-04-08 BNS/TBT Staff

Courtesy of The Baltic Times [website: https://www.baltictimes.com]

di Emanuele G. - sabato 20 aprile 2024 - 363 letture

TALLINN – Estonian Prime Minister and Reform Party leader Kaja Kallas said in a speech made at the party’s general assembly on Sunday that the situation in Europe and the world has actualized the issue of Europe’s defense capability, which will also become one of the key questions of the European Parliament.

"I am not exaggerating one bit when I say that the European Parliament has never been elected at a more difficult and hard time for Europe than now. And never have the personal characteristics of the people sent by Estonia to the European Parliament been more important than in these elections," Kallas said.

"Not only because Europe is facing its biggest crisis since the end of World War II. Also because, in recent years, Estonia has achieved a level of visibility and audibility in Europe that we have never had before. Not only are our views taken into account, our views have been guiding and setting the tone on many issues. We must not give this position away, nor abuse it," she added.

In her speech, Kallas stated that, according to many public opinion surveys, it is namely the chauvinistic conservatives who are on the rise in several European Union countries, promising the voters manna from heaven with a side of whipped cream, if only the European Union were not an obstacle.

"It is not very difficult to guess whose interests such talking points represent. But in difficult and hard times, there are still people who believe that it is better to be alone. No it is not. No one has ever dared to attack either NATO or the European Union. However, countries that do not belong to such alliances are attractive targets for an aggressor," Kallas said, recalling that Sweden and Finland did not make their decision to renounce neutrality out of nothing or unfounded fear.

Based on all this, the title of the Reform Party’s program for the European Parliament elections is "Our Europe. Our security. Our freedom. Our opportunity", the party leader added.

"Of course, a big emphasis in our program is on security. This is an existential question for us, without security, the rest of the topics will turn into theoretical discussions," Kallas said, adding that the program alone will not do anything.

"Only people can implement the program. In the case of each of our candidates for the European Parliament, the voters can be sure that if they are elected, they will do their work in the European Parliament very well," she said.

Finally, the prime minister emphasized that Estonia’s role and task is to convince all the member states of the European Union and the European Union as a whole to significantly increase their defense spending and contribute to the defense industry.

The Reform Party also approved its list of candidates for the upcoming elections, which includes Urmas Paet, Yoko Alender, Luukas Kristjan Ilves, Maria Jufereva-Skuratovski, Marko Mihkelson, Hanah Lahe, Karmen Joller, Maarja Metstak and Hanno Pevkur.

To read the full history, please read [website: https://www.baltictimes.com/kallas__european_defense_capacity_to_be_key_issue_for_european_parliament/]


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