Meri supports new party

  • 2001-12-13
The former president of Estonia, Lennart Meri, has expressed strong support for the formation of a new political party on the basis of the Res Publica association, citing people's disappointment in the existing political forces.

Speaking at the party's founding congress Dec. 8, Meri said it's not the emergence of the new party that is of primary importance, but the will to do something for Estonia.

"People have gathered here to speak about the future of the Republic of Estonia. Not about the next elections, but about what will be in 15-20 years," he said.

The new party's name is Union for the Republic Res Publica. The transformation from association into party was backed by more than 600 congress participants, with two votes against and two abstentions.

Liaison officer Indrek Raudne said the new party has a membership of more than 1,500.

The former head of state laid particular emphasis on the importance to Estonia of education and science, and criticized once again the ruling three-party alliance's energy policy.

"The Estonian energy sphere has been divided in an unfortunate agreement into so complicated chapters that to my mind even Cabinet members have failed to understand everything when reading it," he said, referring to the privatization of the country's largest power stations to the U.S. power company NRG.

Meri observed that the government has also not complied with the language law, as the NRG agreement is in English.