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President of the Republic At the Gala Concert Estonia 100 and Dannebrog 800 at Estonia Concert Hall

15.06.2019

It is my pleasure and great honour to welcome Her Majesty Queen of Denmark in Tallinn at the year when we are celebrating the centenary of our statehood and Denmark is celebrating 800th anniversary of Dannebrog, the Danish flag so beloved by Danes.

Estonian and Danish diplomatic relations date back to 1921, but the historical connections between our people and countries go back many centuries. These contacts have been manifold. The history unites Estonians and Danes, as indeed all the seafaring peoples around the Baltic Sea.

Your Majesty´s friend President Lennart Meri began his speech during a state dinner at Fredensborg castle in 1994 with a smart and friendly note “The Danish Royal Castle is in Copenhagen, but the Garden of the Danish King is in Tallinn“. From today we also have the Danish Queen´s Garden. What could be a stronger symbol of our friendship. 100 years ago when we were fighting for our Independence, Danish volunteers helped to defend the young Estonian Republic. Denmark never recognised the Soviet occupation. You were among the first to re-establish diplomatic relations when we regained our independence. The Danish people wholeheartedly believed in us and truly supported our young independence. You had no doubts. Tusind tak!

We are close friends and likeminded Northern European countries. We share common values. We are partners in the European Union and allies in NATO. We cooperate and support each other in the United Nations. As small countries, it is in our joint interest to defend and preserve the rules based world order. We believe strongly that security goes well beyond our own national borders. This cooperation now has developed further to defending together our whole region.

Your Majesty, our people are closely interconnected in almost every field of life. Today´s concert is an excellent example of our cultural cooperation. Thank you for bringing so much culture with you during this visit.

Let us celebrate the excellent relations between our countries and enjoy the music both by Danish and Estonian musicians.