Ratas: Protocol with United Russia ‘not happening, frozen’
According to its chairman, Jüri Ratas, the Center Party’s cooperation protocol with Russian president Vladimir Putin’s party, United Russia, is not holding up coalition talks with the Social Democrats and IRL. No Estonian government would change the course of Estonia’s security policy, and neither would the coming one, Ratas said.
“I’ve said about this protocol that it does not apply, it isn’t happening, it’s frozen,” Ratas said on Monday. The protocol had been an issue with everybody in the talks, but after the first round, it had been settled. “Because everybody understands very clearly that no government of the Republic of Estonia, and also not the coming one, will change the course of Estonia’s security policy. They can only strengthen it, improve it, get it ahead, and that’s that,” Ratas said, adding that the partners in the coalition talks understood this.
Moreover, all of the Center Party’s 27 members in the Riigikogu were behind the negotiations, Ratas said. The same applied to the Social Democrats and IRL.
Ratas also said that he hadn’t met with former long-time party chairman Edgar Savisaar since he was elected chairman. Savisaar was not responding to his attempts to get in touch. “Of course I would like to meet with him, but these matters can’t be resolved through the media.” They were both grown-ups, Ratas said, and they should be able to discuss matters.