Ilves: EU, Russia relations unlikely to improve in near future

Toomas Hendrik Ilves (center) (Courtesy of the Office of the President)
6/17/2015 3:40 PM
Category: Defense

Speaking at the Munich Security Conference, held in Vienna, Estonian President Toomas Hendrik Ilves said EU-Russian relations are unlikely to return to normal in the near future.

He said relations can not return to previous levels until Russia stops aggression against Ukraine, stops flying aircraft with switched-off transponders in international airspace and stops kidnapping EU citizens from the union's territory.

“A realistic approach to Russia is containment, which does not mean keeping Russia, which has broken international law, in isolation, but a forceful defense against expansionist ambitions. The key to the current conflict lies in reforming and modernizing Ukraine, which Western nations can increase their contribution to help the Ukrainian government,” Ilves said.

The Munich Security Conference is an independent annual forum for security debate with 60 high-level experts taking part in 2015. The first format for the conference was held in 1963.

J.M. Laats

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