President Kaljulaid visits Lääne- and Ida-Viru Counties
President Kersti Kaljulaid began her first domestic visit as head of state on Thursday, first spending the day in Lääne-Viru County before reaching Ida-Viru County by night. The President is continuing with her visit in Estonia's northeasternmost county on Friday.
While Lääne-Viru County expects the President of Estonia to join discussions on topics related to mineral resources and education, Ida-Viru County hopes that the new head of state will be better able to unite Estonia's Estonian- and Russian-speaking communities, reported ETV's news broadcast "Aktuaalne kaamera."
Why did the president kick off her first state visit in the Virumaa region specifially? "There are a lot of interesting businesses here, and it is beautiful here," Kaljulaid replied. "There are people here who have very different interests and perceptions of the world. One can debate, discuss Estonian life."
Union of Lääne-Viru County Municipalities director Sven Hõbemägi first and foremost expects the president to be involved in discussions on topics of vital importance to the county, which include education and mineral resources. Hõbemägi was glad to see that the president was ready to get involved on these subjects. "I suppose that above all, she can influence processes just by voicing her opinions, and these [opinions] have a strong influence," said the Lääne-Viru County leader.
Veikko Luhalaid, director of the Union of Ida-Viru County Municipalities, expressed hope that the President will help increase the share of the authrity of the Estonian state in the county. "It seems to me that over the past ten years, the Russian population in Ida-Viru County and Estonian authority have grown more distant [from one another]," explained Luhalaid, adding that he hopes that the new head of state will pay more attention to Ida-Viru County and its two populations.