TALLINN - Estonian President Kersti Kaljulaid, who hosted his Lithuanian counterpart Gitanas Nauseda on Tuesday, said that similarly to how Estonians and Lithuanians stood together in the Baltic Way, the two nations now both stand up for democracy.
"I was pleased to discuss with President Nauseda our ordinary topics, such as defense cooperation and good relations between our states, as we both remember all too clearly the extraordinary times and the courage of the people that brought our states their freedom," Kaljulaid said at the meeting.
2019 marks an important year for all three Baltic states as well as 15 years since their accession to NATO and the European Union.
"This was preceded by an even bigger expression of desire for freedom and thus, we are also celebrating the 30th anniversary of the Baltic Way," the Estonian president said.
We were brave while standing in the Baltic Way and we also remain brave now as we are standing up for our values and democracy in the whole world, Kaljulaid said, adding that the nations support each other through thick and thin.
"The Baltic states will not forget the partial occupation of Georgia or the war in Ukraine. We are their voice in international organizations, but additionally, this is also how we defend the freedom of our own states and make sure that everyone respects the international rules of play," the Estonian head of state said.
As part of his visit to Estonia on Tuesday, Nauseda was also scheduled to meet with Prime Minister Juri Ratas and speaker of the Riigikogu Henn Polluaas and attend a reception in Kadriorg celebrating the Estonian Restoration of Independence during which the two heads of state were to jointly bestow gratitude rocks on key figures in the independence restoration process.