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Lauri Hussar running for Eesti 200 chair

Lauri Hussar.
Lauri Hussar. Source: Siim Lõvi /ERR

Viimsi Municipal Council Chair Lauri Hussar is running for chair of the Eesti 200 party.

Hussar, a former Postimees editor-in-chief, will run against current leader and founding member Kristina Kallas, at the party's board meeting to be held on October 15.

Hussar said he was motivated to run for the post by the situation in Estonia. 

He said: "Unfortunately, we are entering the biggest crisis of the past few decades, but the political parties at the Riigikogu do not have a plan to deal with it. This is all the result of indecisiveness and missed opportunities to reform, which cannot be simply observed from the back rows, but here we have to step up."

Eesti 200 was founded in 2018 and narrowly missed out on Riigikogu seats at the March 2019 election, though the party won seats at the October 2021 local elections, including in Viimsi, just outside Tallinn, where Hussar is council chair.

Co-founder and board member Margus Tsahkna, a former defense minister, ruled himself out of running for the chair, ERR reports, though another board member, Marek Reinaas, would neither confirm or deny a potential candidacy.

Hussar said that the party needs to perform well at the next general election, to be held on March 5 2023, to bring about change, adding that he believed he had the required qualities to do that.

The deadline for candidate nominations is September 15.

Lauri Hussar was editor-in-chief of Postimees from 2016 to 2019, stepping down to embark on his career in politics. He had previously worked for public broadcaster ERR and for commercial TV channel TV3.

Whether any other candidates will run on October 15 is not clear yet, though former President Kersti Kajlulaid earlier this week rejected rumors that she would be joining or running for the party.

The party is primarily a competitor for votes from, to varying extents, all three coalition parties.

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Editor: Andrew Whyte

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