Siim Kallas: I Will Not Stand in the Way of the Youth ({{commentsTotal}})

Siim Kallas
Siim Kallas Source: Photo: Postimees/Scanpix
Outgoing EU Commissioner Siim Kallas said Estonian politics has gone through a generation shift and he does not want to stand n the way, but has no plans of retiring, either.

“The generation has changed, in the age and in the background sense,” he told in an interview on Monday, adding that he has no plans to "just disappear."

“I will still exist, and if needed, I will give interviews and write articles and hold lectures and in that sense still participate in politics. But I do not see myself in day-to-day politics,” he said.

Besides Estonia, Finland and Italy have also recently experienced a generation shift, and the Czech Republic is also heading in that direction, Kallas said.

Kallas dropped his prime ministerial aspirations at the beginning of the year, citing what he said was a smear campaign against him in light of his past at the helm of the nation's central bank and other high posts. He now said the pressure has somewhat subsided, but he still does not know the reasons, adding that the media could not have acted alone.

“I am sure political interests were behind the the hunt,” he said, adding one must look at the people who benefited to see who was behind the move.

Kallas announced the decision to give up the bid for the head of the government in mid-March, after negotiating with both IRL and the Social Democrats for a potential coalition partner.

Kallas was prime minister between January 28, 2002, and April 10, 2003, taking over the office from Mart Laar. Kallas's successor was Juhan Parts.

He also has held positions as the Estonian Minister of Finance, Estonian Minister of Foreign Affairs, and member of the parliament. Kallas was a member and a former leader of the Reform Party. During the Soviet era, he was chairman of the Estonian Confederation of Trade Unions, and member of the Supreme Council of the Soviet Union.

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