Mayor of Narva Katri Raik (SDE) said on Friday that her promise not to run in Riigikogu elections from this summer was made in an emotional state and that she is still considering whether to participate.
"I remember what I said perfectly. But I have not made a final decision. My party is very much present in Narva, and I want to work for the city. Just like teachers teach and doctors treat, politicians run in elections. Therefore, I have a month left to decide what I will do," Raik told ERR.
The mayor added that her decision will be affected by her health as she will spend at least another week on sick leave. "For the first time in my life, I have made by health my first priority," she said.
"I'm not ready to make long-term plans for at least another week."
ERR asked Raik whether her August pledge was perhaps too emotional.
"Emotions were running high at the time, and I will never know what I would have decided in [Interior Minister] Lauri Läänemets' shoes. But while it is true that I was left utterly alone, people forgive, turn a page and move on," Raik replied.
"I believe that life in Estonia does not hinge on whether I run or not. I don't think it is a crucial matter in any way," Raik added.
Lauri Läänemets, who heads the Social Democrats, said he hopes Raik will run in the spring Riigikogu elections. "I hold on to hope and expect her to participate," Läänemets offered.
"I regard Katri as a very strong candidate in Ida-Viru County. I hope we will get a chance to talk about it again," the SDE leader added.
Raik decided not to run for parliament again on the backdrop of the Narva tank monument removal in mid-August.
"I will not run. That is the emotion of the last few days. I will not run in any party's ranks. I will only attempt to work for the benefit of Narva. And there is enough work to be done," Raik told ERR's Russian service a few months ago.
"Is it final? Yes, it is final for now. But we must realize that a lot can change in the coming months. That said, I cannot imagine myself sharing a room with the people who have made this decision [to remove the tank] and in this manner. I understand it, but I still wouldn't want to be in the room with them," she said in August.
Editor: Marcus Turovski