Eesti in brief - 2011-08-18

  • 2011-08-17

The XIV Dalai Lama Tendzin Gyatso was scheduled to visit the Estonian Riigikogu on Aug. 17 to meet with the parliament’s Tibetan support group as well as with Latvian and Lithuanian politicians, reports Postimees Online. All of the Tibetan support group members, and also other MPs, have expressed a wish to participate at the meeting. “I am glad that recently several other MPs have expressed also a wish to meet with His Holiness. This shows our interest towards the XIV Dalai Lama as an extraordinary person on the one hand, and solidarity with Tibet on the other hand,” said the support group’s chairman, Andres Herkel. Herkel was to host a lunch in honor of the Dalai Lama, and he said that several other politicians, who in earlier parliaments have supported Tibet and are now ministers or European Parliament members, would participate. “For example, Defense Minister Mart Laar will attend that lunch,” said Herkel. Estonia’s current Prime Minister Andrus Ansip was not planning to meet with the Dalai Lama.

Long-term police official, and former Estonian interior minister, Riigikogu Center Party faction member Kalle Laanet is competing for the post of European Police Board (Europol) deputy director, reports Eesti Paevaleht. Interior minister Ken-Marti Vaher wrote a letter of recommendation for Laanet, saying that it would certainly be a recognition for a small state like Estonia if our representative was elected for such a high level job in Europe. Laanet was unwilling to comment upon the matter yet. Allegedly, Laanet thought for quite a long time before sending in his application, as he is one of the leaders of the Center Party wing that rebels against the current Party Chairman Edgar Savisaar, and is the one with whose support Juri Ratas decided to run for the party chairman’s post, competing with Savisaar.

By organizing an official meeting with the Dalai Lama, who was to arrive for a visit to Estonia on Aug. 16, Estonia seriously violates the principles of international relations and the promise to not support the independence of Tibet, contradicting friendly bilateral relations with China, the Chinese embassy in Estonia announced, reports LETA. “We demand that Estonia abolish the official meeting with the Dalai Lama and stop interfering in China’s interior affairs,” the Chinese embassy in Estonia said. Tibet’s exiled spiritual leader, Dalai Lama Tenzin Gyatso, was to visit Estonia at the invitation of the Buddhism Institute and Riigikogu Tibetan support group. Prime Minister Andrus Ansip said in February that Estonia follows the one China policy and, just like prime ministers of all other states, he refrains from officials meetings with the Dalai Lama. President Toomas Hendrik Ilves was to meet with the Dalai Lama with the Dalai Lama.