European Parliament passes resolution supporting Estonia

  • 2007-05-25
  • By TBT staff

STICKING TOGETHER: Estonian MEPs said the matter was a test of the EU's solidarity, one that it apparently passed.

The European Parliament on Thursday passed a resolution expressing support to the Estonian government and firm solidarity with Estonia in its row with Russia.

The deputies said they regard as unacceptable Russian authorities' attempts to interfere into Estonia's internal affairs and appealed to Russia to observe the Vienna Convention without any exceptions. The deputies condemned Russian authorities' unpolished and openly hostile language and attempts to use economic pressure on Estonia as a foreign policy instrument.

The deputies said they were disturbed by the inadequate protection of the Estonian embassy in Moscow by the Russian authorities and physical attacks by Nashi demonstrators against the Estonian ambassador.

The resolution states that the Russian authorities' hostile language with respect to Estonia is in sharp contrast with the principles of international conduct and affects EU-Russian relations as a whole.

The members of parliament appealed to the Russian government to hold an open an unprejudiced dialog with Central and East European countries on the history of the 20th century and crimes against humanity, including crimes against humanity committed by totalitarian Communism.

The resolution garnered 460 votes in favor and 31 against, with 38 abstentions, the press service of the European parliament told BNS.

The parliament asked to the European Commission and all member countries to take part in analyzing the cyber attacks against Estonian websites and present a study on how it would be possible to fight against such attacks and threats on the EU level. The deputies appeal to Russia to give its full support to this study.

The deputies welcomed Estonian President Toomas Hendrik Ilves' appeal to increase the efficiency of dialog within Estonia in order to overcome existing splits between different communities and to create new opportunities for the integration of Russian-speaking Estonians.

Member of the European Parliament Toomas Savi said the resolution was a touchstone of the European Union's solidarity.

"The fact that the European Commission, the Council of the European Union and the European Parliament have repeatedly expressed support to Estonia confirms our ability to speak in one voice in a time of tension," Savi said.

Tunne Kelam, another Estonian MEP, underlined that also German Chancellor Angela Merkel and President of the European Commission Jose Manuel Barroso expressed solidarity which had been put to test by attacks against a member country.