Minister: Israel-Palestine conflict spilling over into Estonian society must be avoided

  • 2023-10-26
  • BNS/TBT Staff

TALLINN – In a letter sent to the representatives of the Estonian Jewish community on Wednesday, Interior Minister Lauri Laanemets affirmed that the state is doing everything possible to ensure that the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, which has escalated again as a result of terrorist attacks by Hamas, does not spill over into our society and is not expressed in anti-Semitism-driven hatred, provocations or attacks on persons and property.

According to Laanemets, there is a risk that the conflict between Israel and Palestine will spill over into Estonian society.

"As a result of the brutal terrorist attack by Hamas, the entire region has seen an escalation of the conflict, which in turn is also spreading to Western countries -- in several countries, for example, an increase in attacks on persons and property motivated by anti-Semitism has already been observed. In order to ensure internal security and public order in Estonia, it is crucial to prevent and rule out all kinds of attacks and provocations against persons and property here, and our law enforcement agencies are actively working towards this goal," the minister said.

According to Laanemets, the purpose of the letter is to publicly confirm the support of the Estonian state to the Jewish community and its commitment to protecting them and the objects important to them from any attacks.

"In general, Estonia's role is to support its partners and allies in their efforts to prevent further escalation of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, because it would inevitably spill over into European countries and undermine our internal security and stability. Domestically, we can only rule out the spilling over of the conflict here by ensuring the sense of security of every resident of Estonia, regardless of their religion or origin," Laanemets said.

In the letter sent to the Estonian Jewish Community and the Estonian Jewish Congregation, the minister said that there is no justification for crimes against humanity, and any attempt to justify terrorist crimes committed against the people of Israel only fuels anti-Semitism and the resulting attacks on Jewish communities.

In the letter, Laanemets confirmed that ensuring the comprehensive security of Jewish people and objects and memorial sites important to the community is under heightened attention of the Estonian law enforcement agencies  in the current situation.