Center MP: No new ISS director until coalition in place

ISS (Kapo) crest.
ISS (Kapo) crest. Source: Patrik Tamm / ERR

The process in appointing a new head of the Internal Security Service (ISS) will be further delayed, while coalition negotiations are ongoing, Center Party MP Jaanus Karilaid says.

The second term of current incumbent Arnold Sinisalu expires next year, meaning the Ministry of the Interior must find a new director of the ISS, also known by its Estonian acronym, Kapo.

Meanwhile, the exit from office of the Center Party – which previously held the interior minister post via Kristian Jaani – has meant the process has been put on ice.

Karilaid said: "The sitting party in the government (Reform – ed.) wanted to knock it, but the legal affairs committee considers it important the matter is heard by all party groups, while it would be good etiquette if all parties have formed a coalition with a majority in the Riigikogu. I think that will come when the coalition is in place."

Karilaid would not name the candidate for the post.

"There is no point in speculating on their name until a new stability is ensured in domestic politics," Karilaid added.

The candidate should have been introduced to the legal affairs committee last Thursday.

Some sources claim that current deputy director Martin Perling is that candidate, a claim which an interior ministry spokesperson last week denied.

Arnold Sinisalu has held the post since 2013 over two terms, the maximum which can be used.

The Reform Party has been ruling alone as a minority government for nearly two weeks, following Prime Minister Kaja Kallas' dismissal of the seven Center Party ministers. On Monday, Reform started coalition talks with Isamaa and the Social Democrats (SDE).


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Editor: Andrew Whyte

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