EDF members dismissed over Covid vaccination refusal go to court

Heads of state reception at Kadriorg Art Museum in Tallinn.
Heads of state reception at Kadriorg Art Museum in Tallinn. Source: Ken Mürk/ERR

Several former Estonian Defense Forces (EDF), including veterans of foreign missions to Afghanistan, Bosnia and other theaters, who were dismissed late last month after refusing to get vaccinated against Covid are taking the matter to court.

The first-tier Tallinn Administrative Court had seen 10 actions filed as of Wednesday, BNS reports, admitting three of them so far.

A total of 46 EDF personnel were dismissed earlier this month, including eight officers and 16 civilian staff, from an initial 65 who had refused to present proof of vaccination.

Over a dozen of the 46 dismissed were veterans of foreign missions in locations such as Afghanistan and Mali, where vaccinations against other illnesses would have been par for the course.

The court has admitted into handling three of the 10 actions filed so far, and has also granted requests for an interim injunction, meaning that the EDF dismissal order would be temporarily overruled, if the injunction is issued.

Since some of the actions are in effect class-action suits, the number of individual former EDF members filing action is considerably higher than 10, BNS reports.

One action has been returned for clarification, while six are still to be ruled on by the administrative court.

EDF commander Lt. Gen. Martin Herem ordered an EDF Covid risk analysis in late August, which required personnel to present proof of vaccination, or of having started a vaccination course, or reason why they could not get immunized, by a deadline of September 13.

Of the 65 who initially refused to present proof of vaccination, it seems likely that 19 subsequently relented, since 46 were ultimately dismissed.


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Editor: Andrew Whyte

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