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Minister of Foreign Affairs Urmas Paet replied to the interpellation (No. 160) concerning the ratification of the border treaty between Estonia and Russia, submitted on 1 June by Members of the Riigikogu Tõnis Lukas, Helir-Valdor Seeder, Peeter Tulviste and Trivimi Velliste.

According to the Minister of Foreign Affairs the ratification resolution of the Riigikogu together with the preambula added to it in the course of legal proceeding of the Riigikogu has not caused any serious damage to the Estonian foreign policy. The facts laid down in the ratification resolution have been known to everybody for a long time and no new elements came to light therein, rather quite the contrary in a sense. “”Even though the Russian party has made reproaches to the effect that Estonia has additional territorial claims, the text of the preambula in this ratification act eliminates such a situation, because it clearly stated that the border agreements concluded on 18 May make amendments to the provision of the Tartu Peace Treaty about the position of the border line,” Mr. Paet stated. The resolution of the Riigikogu on the ratification has in no way had negative influence on Estonia’s foreign policy. “During the last months our partners in the European Union and NATO, where our positions have been clearly comprehended, have also confirmed it,” Minister of Foreign Affairs said.

Dealing with the future of the border treaties between Estonia and Russia, Mr. Paet said that bilateral treaties could enter into force only when both parties want so. Unfortunately, during the last months the Russian party has demonstrated its unwillingness. “What Estonia and the European Union can do is to continuously keep up the subject as the non-concluded one on the agenda at different meetings in the form of EU-Russia negotiations as well as at possible bilateral meetings.”

The verbatim record of the Riigikogu sitting (in Estonian) can be found at: http://web.riigikogu.ee/ems/plsql/stenograms.form