Former prosecutor general joins Isamaa

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Lavly Perling. Source: Priit Mürk/ERR

Former prosecutor general Lavly Perling has officially joined the opposition Isamaa party.

Perling said she found Isamaa the only option in Estonia when it came to joining a party of a national conservative hue.

"In my view, Isamaa is a party that cares for Estonia, and is one that has had a major role in constructing the Estonian state," she said.

"I am delighted that a number of wise and open-minded party members have invited me to join them. Together, we can pursue a strong Isamaa, with courageous ideas offering a clear alternative to today's parties of convenience," Perling went on.

The move ends several months' speculation about Perling, whose candidacy for a second term as prosecutor general was opposed by the Conservative People's Party of Estonia (EKRE), and who declared an interest in running for Isamaa late last year.

She was not officially released from office until earlier this month, though Andres Parmas replaced her as prosecutor general over a year ago.

Isamaa's Tallinn branch approved Perling's application to join Monday, BNS reports, with branch chief Olle Koop saying that: "Such a top expert joining Isamaa is particularly important in the light of the corruption cases that have shaken both Estonia and Tallinn. Together we can offer our vision and long-term plan for preventing corruption and combating it in Tallinn as well as in Estonia as a whole."

Isamaa was in office with Center and EKRE, but found itself out of office after the coalition collapsed following Jüri Ratas' (Center) resignation, in the wake of a major real estate corruption scandal which engulfed Center.

Isamaa has also seen a growing faction within it called the Parempoolsed, or "Right wingers", a misleading term since its pronouncements have mainly concerned taking a more inclusivist stance on social issues than the party mainstream.

While in office, Isamaa punched above its weight at least as far as support ratings - which have long hovered around the threshold 5-percent mark needed to win seats at an election - holding several key ministries, including justice, defense and foreign.

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Editor: Andrew Whyte

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