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President Kaljulaid: Finland is an important foreign and security policy partner for Estonia

President Kaljulaid: Finland is an important foreign and security policy partner for Estonia © Juhani Kandell/Office of the President of Finland

20.10.2016

"The global security environment has become fraught. Europe is facing numerous significant challenges, with the conflict in Ukraine and situation in Syria among them. Maintaining the unity and mutual solidarity of countries that share foreign and security policy principles is of key importance in times such as these. I am happy to state that we share common values with Finland," said President Kersti Kaljulaid, who is on an introduction visit to Finland.

President Kaljulaid met in Helsinki with the Head of State, Sauli Niinistö, Chairwoman of the Parliament, Maria Lohela, and the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Timo Soini.

President Kaljulaid emphasised that it is important for Estonia to continue close defence co-operation with Finland, and the security of the region is of utmost importance for the neighbouring countries. "The tense security situation has contributed to more efficient co-operation between the Nordic and Baltic states. Finland is a good, secure partner for Estonia in these matters. The members of our Defence Forces work in close co-operation on both the shores of the Gulf of Finland and far away from home, such as in Lebanon and Mali," said President Kaljulaid.

Apart from security issues, presidents Kaljulaid and Niinistö also discussed the future of Europe, the impact of the UK's Brexit Referendum on the European Union, Estonia's presidency of the European Union in the second half of 2017 and economic co-operation between Estonia and Finland. "Finland has been one of the most important economic and trading partners for Estonia for a long time. We hope to form even closer ties in the spheres of information technology, energy, transport and many other areas," added the Estonian Head of State.

"An active contribution will be required to maintain good relationships between the two countries, two neighbours. I intend to promote relations between Estonia and Finland that are as close and industrious as possible, as my predecessor did," said President Kaljulaid after the meeting.

From Finland, President Kaljulaid will continue to a visit to Riga to meet the President of the Republic of Latvia, Raimonds Vējonis, and the Speaker of the Parliament, Ināra Mūrniecega. The Head of State will return to Estonia on Friday night.


Office of the President
Public Relations Department