Opposition MPs predominate in several new Riigikogu support groups

Riigikogu's main debating chamber.
Riigikogu's main debating chamber. Source: Priit Mürk/ERR

MPs from the newly sworn-in XV Riigikogu have set up six new support groups. These groups tend to focus on specific issues, often those which particular parties are more interested in, and opposition MPs are more prevalent in the composition of most of the new groups.

Support groups with a broader perspective, for instance on defense issues, tend to have a more multi-party make-up.

In addition, two new parliamentary friendship groups, which forge links with legislatures in other countries – in these cases Poland and Armenia – have been set up.

The XV  Riigikogu has in total 38 parliamentary friendship groups, plus 47 support groups.

Members of Parliamentary Friendship Groups

The Estonia-Poland Parliamentary Friendship Group consists of: Ants Frosch (EKRE, chair), Kristo Enn Vaga (Reform, deputy chair), Tõnis Lukas (Isamaa), Anti Poolamets (EKRE), Kersti Sarapuu (Center), Aivar Kokk (Isamaa), Siim Pohlak (EKRE), Peeter Tali (Eesti 200), Enn Eesmaa (Center), Arvo Aller (EKRE), Evelin Poolamets (EKRE), Jaak Valge (EKRE), Henn Põlluaas (EKRE), Rene Kokk (EKRE), Urmas Reinsalu (Isamaa).

The Estonia-Armenia Parliamentary Friendship Group is made up of: Mati Raidma (Reform, chair), Tanel Kiik (deputy chair, Center), Anti Haugas (Reform), Juku-Kalle Raid (Eesti 200), Liisa Pakosta (Eesti 200), Aivar Kokk (Isamaa), Urmas Reinsalu (Isamaa).

Members of Support Groups

The Continuing Oil Shale Mining and Refining Support Group is made up of: Arvo Aller (chair, EKRE), Rene Kokk (EKRE), Helle-Moonika (EKRE) Helme, Anti Poolamets (EKRE), Ants Frosch (EKRE), Rain Epler (EKRE), Meelis Kiili (Reform), Jaak Aab (Center), Aleksei Jevgrafov (Center), Maria Jufereva-Skuratovski (Center).

The Disallowing Electronic Elections Support Group will be: Martin Helme. (chair, EKRE), Mart Helme (EKRE), Rene Kokk (EKRE), Anti Poolamets (EKRE), Arvo Aller (EKRE), Evelin Poolamets (EKRE), Varro Vooglaid, (EKRE) Henn Põlluaas (EKRE), Helle-Moonika Helme (EKRE).

The "Estonian School Is the Home of the Estonian Language" support group: Helle-Moonika Helme (chair, EKRE), Henn Põlluaas (EKRE), Varro Vooglaid (EKRE), Evelin Poolamets (EKRE), Arvo Aller (EKRE), Anti Poolamets (EKRE), Mart Maastik (Isamaa), Riina Solman (Isamaa), Martin Helme (EKRE), Andres Metsoja (Isamaa).

The Defence League (Kaitseliit) Support Group will consist of: Meelis Kiili (Reform, chair), Riina Solman (Isamaa, deputy chair), Andres Sutt (Reform), Annely Akkermann (Reform), Timo Suslov (Reform), Igor Taro (Eesti 200), Andrus Seeme (Reform), Alar Laneman (EKRE), Andres Metsoja (Isamaa), Helir-Valdor Seeder (Isamaa), Siim Kallas (Reform), Kristo Enn Vaga (Reform), Tõnis Lukas (Isamaa), Leo Kunnas (EKRE), Arvo Aller (EKRE), Urmas Reinsalu (Isamaa), Pärtel-Peeter Pere (Reform), Peeter Tali (Eesti 200), Rain Epler (EKRE), Anti Poolamets (EKRE), Henn Põlluaas (EKRE), Erkki Keldo (Reform), Ester Karuse (Center), Lauri Laats (Center), Eerik-Niiles Kross (Reform).

Volunteer Rescue Service (Päästeliit) Support Group: Mati Raidma (Chair, Reform), Peeter Tali (deputy chair, Eesti 200), Karmen Joller (Reform), Kristina Šmigun-Vähi (Reform), Annely Akkermann (Reform), Urmas Reinsalu (Isamaa), Aivar Kokk (Isamaa), Õnne Pillak (Reform), Jüri Ratas (Center), Tanel Kiik (Center).

Natural (Traditional) Family and Marriage Support Group consists of: Varro Vooglaid (Chair, EKRE), Evelin Poolamets (deputy chair, EKRE), Martin Helme (EKRE), Mart Helme (EKRE), Rain Epler (EKRE), Anti Poolamets (EKRE), Ants Frosch (EKRE), Rene Kokk (EKRE), Siim Pohlak (EKRE), Jaak Valge (EKRE), Helle-Moonika Helme (EKRE), Arvo Aller (EKRE), Alar Laneman (EKRE), Helir-Valdor Seeder (Isamaa), Mart Maastik (Isamaa), Henn Põlluaas (EKRE), Riina Solman (Isamaa), Priit Sibul (Isamaa), Liisa Pakosta (Eesti 200).

Interestingly, while this last group is dominated by EKRE MPs, along with a couple of members from Isamaa, the former gender equality commissioner, Liisa Pakosta, who ran for the socially-liberal Eesti 200 party, is also in the group.

Through the support groups formed in the Riigikogu, both individual MPs and party groups of the six political parties represented at the XV Riigikogu will be able to draw attention to specific issues, and to support or protect the interests of spheres of life in a narrower sense, the Riigkogu's press service says.

Parliamentary friendship groups help the members of the Riigikogu communicate with other national legislatures worldwide, and to implement foreign policy and promote Estonia around the world.

The full list of parliamentary friendship groups is here, and of support groups is here (both links in Estonian).


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Editor: Andrew Whyte

Source: Riigikogu press office

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