TALLINN - President Toomas Hendrik Ilves stated on June 23 that the so-called Russian political financing scandal demonstrated that, besides external factors, Estonia’s independence could also be threatened by internal factors, reports National Broadcasting. “Only recently, we went through a shock in national politics where some politicians were prepared to buy themselves a better election result for money from another country, and thus make themselves hostage to these sponsors,” said the Estonian head of state in his speech given at the parade organized to celebrate the Victory Day of the War of Independence in Tartu.
“Such risks cannot be avoided by membership in any organizations, cyber security measures of any efficiency nor by Article 5 of the NATO Treaty,” said Ilves. “Conscripted service of our sons will not deter any enemies if the soldiers’ oaths are sold on the other side of the border and no regret is displayed over it,” he added.
In his speech, the president also referred to Herman Simm, who has been convicted of treason. “We would be making a grave mistake if we were to see the sources of danger for Estonia’s independence only in external factors – today and in the future,” emphasized Ilves.
He also noted that when Estonia became a member of NATO in 2004, it might have seemed to some that the country’s existential problems were solved forever, but in the meantime new risks have emerged – such as energy security and cyber security problems.
The head of state added that Russia’s aggression against Georgia in 2008 proved clearly that traditional threats have not disappeared, either.