Defense Ministry secretary general: Marran was not pressured to go to RMK

Defense ministry Secretary General Kusti Salm.
Defense ministry Secretary General Kusti Salm. Source: Priit Mürk/ERR

Former head of the Foreign Intelligence Service (Välisluuramet) Mikk Marran was not pressured into applying for his new job as head of the state forestry commission, the RKK, Ministry of Defense Secretary General Kusti Salm says.

In a short interview with ERR's Indrek Kiisler which follows, Salm also declined to comment on an article by former ministry undersecretary Meelis Oidsalu, which was highly critical of Marran in relation to his time as Foreign Intelligence Service head.

What is your comment on Meelis Oidsalu's article, in which he he criticizes Mikk Marran's behavior as the head of the Foreign Intelligence Service?

By way of comment, I can say that applying for RMK was Mikk's own decision, and he was not pressured to do so. Comments from the Ministry of Defense end here.

Were you satisfied with Mikk Marran's work as head of the Foreign Intelligence Service?

I'm not willing to share any other comments on this topic. But that is not to be taken to mean that he did not perform satisfactorily.

Was the article which appeared on ERR online a surprise for the Ministry of Defense?

I do not wish to comment on the article published today (Monday - ed.). It is standard practice in western countries that the work of intelligence agencies is not publicly disseminated.

Meelis Oidsalu wrote that top Estonian officials have their own inner circle, within which well-paid positions are doled-out. Is there not such an inner circle of top officials, who decide who gets what job there and then?

I am not aware of such a thing existing anywhere.

Is the Ministry of Defense concerned that this kind of speculation is swirling around an outgoing intelligence chief at a time of conflict in Ukraine?

Dissecting Estonian intelligence and advanced warnings via public columns cannot be beneficial to Estonian security in any way.

Kusti Salm was talking to Indrek Kiisler.


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Editor: Andrew Whyte, Aleksander Krjukov

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