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  Tuesday, June 2, 2020
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Lawmakers at the State Duma lower house of the Russian parliament called for not "reacting to the provocation," and take calmly the calls by the Estonian Foreign Ministry
Lawmakers at the State Duma lower house of the Russian parliament called for not "reacting to the provocation," and take calmly the calls by the Estonian Foreign Ministry, which had asked the European Union leadership to introduce sanctions against Russia The lawmakers also downplayed Estonia's call for canceling the upcoming Russia-EU summit in Samara." "It's a macro task of overseas evil geniuses to separate Russia and the European Union through the conflict with Estonia," first deputy chairman of the house committee on international affairs Leonid Slutsky said in an interview with Itar-Tass. "Both sides /Russia and the EU/ should have enough common sense not to fall for obvious provocations," he added. "I believe the parliamentary diplomacy may play not the least role in preserving relations between Russia and the European Union," Slutsky said. But the lawmaker expressed bewilderment over statements by the Estonian authorities. He accused the Estonian Foreign Ministry of the attempt to "turn everything upside down," and pose Russia as the main lawbreaker, instead of admitting facts of massive human rights violations in this Baltic state. Slutsky said he was not surprised with the fact that Estonia is trying to appeal to the European Union. The EU, providing increased funding to Tallinn, is actually creating a most favored nation regime for the revanchist sentiment there, he went on to say. "European taxpayers, in effect, are funding the Russophobia policy in Estonia," the lawmaker said. Summing up the results of the visit to Tallinn by a Duma delegation, of which he was a member, Slutsky said the parliamentarians of the two countries had failed to bring their positions closer, because of the stubbornness of the Estonian leadership. In the main, more discrepancies remained at all levels," he regretted. On Wednesday, activists of the youth movement Nashi, Young Russia and Mestnye tried to block a news conference of Estonia’s Ambassador Marina Kaljurand in Moscow. The news conference was held in the editorial office of the weekly Argumenty i Fakty. About 100 activists rallied before the newspaper’s building at midday, chanting “Fascism Won’t Pass” to protest the removal of a Soviet war memorial from downtown Tallinn to a remote cemetery. Several activists got into the building through windows. Tens of young people blocked exit ways from the editorial office, not letting the ambassador’s car pass and chanting “Shame”. Police later restored order near the editorial office. Earlier in the day, the activists of Nashi tried to block in central Moscow the car of the Swedish embassy that left the grounds of the Estonian embassy. The youngsters assumed that the car was carrying Kaljurand. Police freed the car, and Nashi activists later made an apology to the Swedish embassy. Estonian Prime Minister Andrus Ansip, who asked the European Union for assistance, said he believed the situation with the Soviet-era monument had been provoked by Russia's accusations. "We're expecting a clear reaction from the European Union to Russia's coordinated attacks on Estonia," the Estonian premier said in a political statement, made in parliament. "We addressed the European Union and ask it to react accordingly to it, as we believe that the attacks on a EU member are an attack on the whole European Union," the Estonian prime minister said. On the problem of the "Bronze Soldier", Andrus Ansip said its moving to a military cemetery resolved the problem of dual sentiment regarding this monument. "There, in the cemetery, it is no longer perceived as an irritating symbol of occupation," the prime minister said.
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