Estonian PM tells NATO chief presence of allies crucial for Estonia

  • 2021-02-09
  • BNS/TBT Staff

TALLINN - Estonian Prime Minister Kaja Kallas said in a video call with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg on Tuesday that the presence of NATO allies in Estonia and the region are of key importance to Estonia.

"Strengthening the deterrence posture of NATO in Europe has been extremely important in the past few years; I would like to thank our allies for their presence in the region, be it in the form of the NATO [Enhanced Forward Presence (eFP)] battle group, air policing or other allied activities," Kallas said.

Kallas and Stoltenberg also discussed the NATO 2030 initiative and the possible NATO summit this year.

"We're pleased that NATO is increasingly focusing on new challenges while also attaching great importance to collective defense in Europe. Maintaining allied unity is definitely important for us," Kallas said, adding that Estonia also deems it important to contribute to NATO missions and to maintain its defense spending at over 2 percent of GDP.

The Estonian premier and the NATO secretary general also discussed the situation in Russia.

"Russia's conduct over the past few weeks has shown that their interest in developing relations with the West is not sincere," Kallas noted.