Russian politicians criticize Põlluaas' Tartu Peace Treaty comment

Estonian-Russian border in Narva.
Estonian-Russian border in Narva. Source: ERR

Members of the Russian government criticized the Speaker of the Riigikogu Henn Põlluaas' (EKRE) New Year's address where he said the Estonian border established by the Tartu Peace Treaty is valid.

"Such statements only alienate the possibility to ratify the frontier agreements signed by Estonia and Russia in 2014 and create additional tension between the parliaments," Chairman of the Committee on International Affairs of the State Duma Leonid Slutski said. He said such statements were made for the local audience.

A representative of the State Duma Jelena Panina said that Põlluaas's statement is inappropriate and could exacerbate the relationships between the two countries. "Powerful communities in the west who see the Baltic states as measures to pressure Russia can take advantage of it. In this case, the Baltic states, including Estonia, can end up at the center of a global confrontation," Panina told Russian news agency RIA Novosti.

The first vice-chairman of the Russian Federation's Council Committee on Foreign Affairs Vladimir Džabarov emphasized that it is not possible for Tallinn to reach normal relations with Moscow when Estonian politicians are allowed to make such statements.

"If they want good relations, it is necessary to distance themselves from such useless standards, which besides causing tension between the two states, does not add anything," Džabarov told television channel RT. He said that reaching the border established after in the Tartu Peace Treaty is an unreachable goal. "Nobody will even discuss it with Estonia," Dšabarov said.

Member of the committee Sergei Tsekov said that the statement reflects a desire to get attention. "Changing the border between Estonia and Russia is impossible. It is also talked about in the Constitution of Russia," Tsekov said.

The border established by the Tartu Peace Treaty 101 years ago does not line-up with the current Estonian-Russian border meaning part of Estonia's territory, as defined by the treaty, is now Russian territory.

Minister of Foreign Affairs Urmas Reinsalu (Isamaa) told Russian newspaper Kommersant in September that Estonia has no plan to submit territorial demands to Russian.


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Editor: Roberta Vaino

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