TALLINN – Estonian MEP Riho Terras said that commander of the defense forces Lt. Gen. Martin Herem is right that Russia's aggressiveness and real military threat should not be underestimated and added that Estonia must be ready to double its defense costs.
"I remember that at the beginning of the current coalition talks, we invited the commander of the defense forces to present proposals and real needs for increasing Estonia's defense capabilities. Herem's long and thorough description of the situation today clearly shows that we need to contribute significantly more to strengthening Estonia's defense capability. We need to develop real military capabilities and stop talking about some abstract percentage of defense spending," Terras said.
"The increase in defense spending this year is a step in the right direction, but we must be prepared to invest twice as much in national defense. Russia will always have a numerical advantage, which is why we must do everything we can to ensure that the Estonian defense forces and the Kaitseliit (Defense League) volunteer corps are better trained, motivated and better equipped than the enemy. At the same time, we must move forward with the concept of broad-based national defense and increase the presence of allies in Estonia. We have only one country, Estonia, and we have to fight for it!" the MEP added.