No Extensive Translations of Laws into Russian Imminent, Michal Says ({{commentsTotal}})

Justice Minister Kristen Michal
Justice Minister Kristen Michal Source: Photo: Postimees/Scanpix

It would be wrong to expect that Estonian laws will be translated into Russian on a massive scale, said Kristen Michal, head of the Reform Party parliamentary faction and former justice minister.

“Information and notification are important but one should avoid creating false expectations,” Michal told Postimees today.

He was commenting on the plan to translate 50 essential laws into Estonia, initiated by Justice Minister Andres Anvelt, a Social Democrat.

“We’re not surprised when we’re expected to know the local language and culture in Europe. The same principle applies in Estonia - the laws are in the official language. That is Estonian,” he said.

The issue was discussed during the coalition talks and according to Michal, his party favored translating some laws in connection with some projects for citizens and businesses to use, provided that it is mostly a summary of Estonian laws or clarifications of some issues related to specific laws.

Anvelt told uudised.err.ee last week that the ministry plans to translate into Russian a number of more important laws that regulate people's everyday lives. Prime Minister Taavi Rõivas, also of the Reform Party, has been skeptical about the idea and also supports summaries, not official translations.