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Arnold Ruutel to reject the invitation from Russia
Estonian politicians provide varied comments on the decision of Estonian President Arnold Ruutel to reject the invitation to participate in the celebration of the 60th Anniversary of the Victory over Nazis, although the majority of them believe that the president must represent Estonia in Moscow. For instance, Speaker of Estonian Parliament Ene Ergma believes that the president must attend the celebrations in Moscow. "I suggest that he should go because Estonia is a member of the EU and NATO, and it is also Russia's neighbor, and if there is a possibility to sign a treaty on border with Russia on May 10, it would be beneficial for us and the entire European Union," Ms. Ergma believes. Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Estonian Parliament Committee Marco Mickelson was concise, saying, "I doubt that this decision of the president takes into account Estonian national interests." According to Chairman of the Estonian Social-Democratic Party Ivari Padar, the president's decision reflects internal political interests, although foreign policy should be his priority. Member of the parliamentary committee on foreign affairs from the Reform Party Sergei Ivanov calls the president's decision "inadequate." "He must go to Moscow because his visit would meet the interests of the Estonian society. I also do not understand why he had to spend so much time consulting and exchanging opinions on this issue. Almost all parliamentary parties suggested that he should go to Moscow. His rejection is obviously not a decision of a real statesman," he said. The only political force, which approved without reservations of the president's refusal to visit Moscow, was the nationalist-radical Pro Patria Union party whose leader, Tunne Kelam, announced that Estonia conducted its polices as a truly independent country that was not afraid of talking openly and transparently about its history. "People abroad should understand where we are coming from," Mr. Kelam stated. Estonian President Arnold Ruutel and Lithuanian President Valdas Adamkus announced their decision not to attend the Moscow celebrations of the 60th Anniversary of the Great Victory over Nazis. On the contrary, President of another Baltic state - Latvia -- Vaira Vike-Freiberga announced recently that she did not have any reasons to reject the invitation to attend celebrations in Moscow.
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