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On the motion of the National Defence Committee, the first reading of the Bill on Amendments to § 8 of the International Military Cooperation Act (141 SE), initiated by the same Committee, was concluded. The Bill was prepared due to the need to ensure the participation of staff officers and, as necessary, also staff non-commissioned officers of the Estonian Defence Forces in an international military operation launched by NATO or the European Union immediately when a decision to that effect is made. In the initial stage of an operation, contribution of the staff officers is important for the successful launching of the operation and planning of activities which is a precondition for the achievement of the objectives of the operation and therefore quick contribution is expected of Member States. The Bill amends the Act by adding a new subsection according to which the Riigikogu determines by a Resolution the quota of the members of the Defence Forces for every year who can participate in the work of the international military headquarters located in the operation area upon launching of a new international military operation led by the North Atlantic Treaty Organization or the European Union. The Bill was sent to the second reading.

On the motion of the Constitutional Committee, the first reading of the Draft Resolution “Formation of the Committee of Investigation of the Riigikogu for Ascertaining the Facts relating to the Issuing of Residence Permits” (149 OE), submitted by the Estonian Centre Party Faction and the Social Democratic Party Faction, was concluded. According to the Draft Resolution, the Riigikogu committee of investigation to be formed will consist of four members of the Riigikogu and four alternate members. The task of the committee will be to ascertain the facts relating to the issuing of Estonian residence permits, the changing of the quota of residence permits and the possible related political corruption and influence peddling. As a result of its work, the Committee should submit its proposals to the Riigikogu and the Government. In the opinion of the initiators of the Draft Resolution, the committee might finish its work by the end of the spring session or in the autumn session at the latest. The Draft Resolution was sent to the second reading.

On the motion of the Social Affairs Committee, the Bill on Amendments to the State Family Benefits Act (127 SE), initiated by the Estonian Centre Party Faction, was rejected at the first reading. 54 members of the Riigikogu voted in favour of the motion and 40 members voted against. Thus, this Bill was dropped from the legislative proceeding.

The Riigikogu Press Service