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Chairman of the National Defence Committee of the Riigikogu (Parliament of Estonia) Marko Mihkelson said that the killing by terrorists of tens of people in Paris is an attack against not only France, but against the whole Europe.

“If this is not declaring war on Europe, then what is it? Therefore it is necessary for everybody to react, and to react together. The European Union with its allies must now draw rapid conclusions and take decisive essential measures. The terrorists must know that the power that is fighting against them will not show mercy and is ready to strike back,” Mihkelson said.

“The massacre in Paris is convincing evidence which shows what kind of threat the Islamic extremism, faithful to the idea of caliphate, is to the common cultural space of Europe. It is an existential threat to Europe that can be confronted only with joint and powerful actions,” Mihkelson emphasised.

What should be done? First, the EU has to understand that the continuing and rapid spreading of Islamic extremism, including inside the union, is a very serious threat to our citizens. Proceeding from that, it is necessary to formulate our common strategy both for activities inside the union and also for resisting the threat of attack in foreign and security policy sphere, the Chairman of the National Defence Committee said.

Mihkelson underlined that the European Union has to do everything to take its outer borders under control at last. Protecting our inner borders is not a solution if we are unable to ascertain who enters the EU and for what reason.

“The danger of such attacks can be minimised inside the union only if intelligence information is exchanged between the states and active measures against terrorist networks are carried out. It is also necessary to map the main sources of the spreading of Islamic extremism in the European Union,” Mihkelson noted.

He considers it important that outside the EU, all European countries, as members of international coalitions, contributed decisively more to fighting against the Islamic State and its affiliate organisations.

“This time, a solidarity march on the streets of Paris is not enough. We are facing a long fight in the direct sense of the word, and Europe has to be ready for that,” Mihkelson emphasised.

Riigikogu Press Service

Gunnar Paal, +372 6316351, +372 51902837

[email protected]