Spanish FM visits Estonia marking diplomatic relations centenary

Estonian Minister of Foreign Affairs Eva-Maria Liimets and Spanish foreign minister Arancha González Laya.
Estonian Minister of Foreign Affairs Eva-Maria Liimets and Spanish foreign minister Arancha González Laya. Source: Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Spain's foreign minister made an official visit to Tallinn on Friday and met with the president, minister of foreign affairs and head of the Riigikogu's foreign affairs committee.

Arancha Gonzalez Laya met with foreign minister Eva-Maria Liimets and discussed bilateral relations, COVID-19, the European Union, NATO and transatlantic relations, issues related to Russia, Ukraine and Belarus, and Latin America.

The visit celebrates the centenary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Estonia and Spain. Liimets said bilateral relations between Estonia and Spain are very good and strong especially in the field of culture.

"Spain is an excellent partner for Estonia at the European Union and an important ally in NATO. I am grateful that Spain is making an important contribution to our region's security by participating in NATO's Baltic Air Policing. We, in turn, are actively contributing to stability in the South," Liimets said.

They also talked about the digital and green transitions that are crucial for the future of the European Union.

While in Estonia, the Spanish foreign minister is also meeting with Prime Minister Kaja Kallas, President Kersti Kaljulaid and Marko Mihkelson, Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Estonian Parliament.

The foreign minister met with President Kersti Kaljulaid at Kadriorg. The meeting was the second in as many months after Kaljulaid's recent trip to Madrid.

The president wrote on Facebook that the pair discussed international relations, human rights, Ukraine and issues of the United Nations Security Council, of which both are current members.  

Estonian President Kersti Kaljulaid and Spanish foreign minister Arancha González Laya. Source: Office of the President.

Gonzalez Laya also met with Marko Mihkelson, chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Riigikogu. The Riigikogu's social media team said the pair discussed Ukraine and European unity. 

Mihkelson said that it was important to discuss the global challenges facing us, be they climate change or the growing influence of China, with our allies also during the current coronavirus pandemic.

When speaking of the situation at the Ukrainian borders, it was mutually admitted that if the conflict escalated, Russia would risk seeing serious consequences first of all for its own international interests.

Mihkelson thanked Spain for their strong support in ensuring the security of the Baltic region.

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Editor: Helen Wright

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