Daily Eesti Päevaleht reported that one of IRL's most popular politicians, Eerik-Niiles Kross, is unable to receive clearance to access state secrets, and is thus prevented from taking high office.
Paradoxically, considering Kross's reputation as a thorn in the side of Russia, the newspaper suggested the CIA played a role in the decision, saying today that according to its sources from both Estonia and the US, Kross is prohibited from entering the United States, with a ban on access to NATO classified documents and other secrets.
"It has come to light in the course of Eesti Päevaleht's investigation that it has been decided to pre-empt questions on the matter of a state secret clearance for Kross and a consensus is in place: he will not get clearance under any circumstances. The US government is behind the prohibition, which, as is well known, has previously established a ban on Kross entering the US," the daily wrote.
The ban could be the reason he is not challenging Defense Minister Urmas Reinsalu for IRL's top spot at the party's internal elections in a few weeks.
The Arctic Sea case, where a Russian ship was "hijacked," is not thought to be the reason for the US veto on Kross, the daily said. It added that sources, while tight-lipped, point to a case or cases where Kross falsely claimed to be working for or with the US intelligence agency, the CIA.
Reinsalu said he does not know of any US ban on Kross, adding that the state will not comment on any previous or current rights to state secrets.
Neither does the US comment on any visa records, which are confidential under US law.
Kross led IRL's campaign at the last local elections in October, gathering the third highest number of votes in Tallinn, and nearly three times more than Reinsalu. He has previously worked in the filed of security, as a coordinator of agencies and adviser to President Lennart Meri.