TALLINN - At a meeting on Thursday, Estonian President Alar Karis and Speaker of the Finnish parliament Jussi Halla-aho discussed security and defense cooperation in the Baltic Sea region, support for Ukraine, and bilateral relations.
The Estonian head of state said that Finland's NATO membership provides an opportunity to further deepen defense cooperation between the close neighboring countries.
"We have had good cooperation with Finland in the defense sector over the years, including in many joint exercises. Now that Finland is a member of the alliance, this cooperation can only deepen. This, in turn, strengthens the security of the entire Baltic Sea region," Karis said.
Addressing energy security, the president noted that there is a need to expand and diversify mutual connections.
"Diverse energy connections are part of our security," Karis said, adding that this is why the joint decision of the Baltic countries to completely disconnect from the Russian power system is crucial.
For deepening Estonian and Finnish bilateral relations, the president said that the third report on future cooperation between Estonia and Finland serves as a solid foundation. Based on this report, activities in the digital, green, economic, and cultural sectors can be implemented between the two countries.
Karis also emphasized the importance of joint efforts in supporting Ukraine so that the war ends on Ukraine's terms and reconstruction work accelerates. Discussions also covered supporting Ukraine on its path to NATO and the European Union, holding Russia accountable, and utilizing frozen assets for the benefit of Ukraine.