MPs: It is still unclear whether Kallas knew about Russia business

{{1693917180000 | amCalendar}}

It is still unclear whether Prime Minister Kaja Kallas (Reform) knew her husband's company to which she granted a loan had a stake in another doing business in Russia, Center MP Tõnis Mölder said after a sitting of the Riigikogu Security Agencies Monitoring Select Committee. Aivar Kokk said that it is also unclear whether the ISS briefed Kallas on husband's business.

"The main question in this whole scandal is whether Kaja Kallas knew at the time that her husband's firm, to which she granted the loan, had a clear stake in a logistics company doing business in Russia. Whether big or small, that Russia business connection is there. And we did not receive a clear answer to the question of whether she was aware at the committee sitting today," Mölder told ERR Tuesday.

"Personally, I find it very improbable that Kaja Kallas did not know. In a situation where she knew the details of other smaller loans she had granted to different people in the past, knew exactly how they were used, I find it rather improbable that she would not know the fate of €350,000," the MP added.

Mölder, who attended the committee sitting in place of Center's Ester Karuse, is a member of the Riigikogu Anti-Corruption sitting that summoned Kallas Monday.

He said that several very simple questions remain unanswered. "I believe that Kaja Kallas should give the public clear answers in terms of how much she has lent her husband's firm, when were those loans granted, how much of them have been repaid and with what interest. Kallas' message from yesterday, that she has sent the contracts to committee members, is not exhaustive in those terms."

Mölder also suggested Kallas might explain where she got the €350,000 in disposable assets in the first place.

"The origin of the money is important. Analyzing Kaja Kallas' income from the last four years, it is not clear how she could afford to grant such a loan," Mölder said, adding that no clear information has been provided in those terms. What Kallas said about those resources being from before she entered politics are a little too superficial," Mölder said.

"It could point to the money belonging to someone else, while I would not go as far as to make that assumption today. I believe it is Kallas' personal wealth that she has lent out in good faith," the opposition MP added.

"But again, Kaja Kallas should provide clear and exhaustive answers which everyone in Estonia could interpret the same way as it is more than a question of morality."

Kokk: We did not get an answer in terms of whether the ISS warned Kallas

Aivar Kokk (Isamaa), member of the Riigikogu Security Agencies Monitoring Select Committee, Aivar Kokk told ERR that several questions remain unanswered and that the committee will convene again to hear from Estonian Internal Security Service (ISS) Director Margo Palloson again on September 18.

Kokk said that the security service's powers in this matter seemed insufficient to the committee, which asked for a copy of relevant rules to see whether the ISS did everything they entailed and whether it should be given broader powers to exercise control over heads of government and MPs," Kokk said.

"There is the matter of whether the ISS should brief the premier if it discovers members of their family might be open to blackmail or involved in activities that threaten national security. We have not received an answer and the ISS has no such obligation today."

ERR asked whether the ISS might have warned the PM that her husband's business ties could harm her.

"We did not get an answer as such," Kokk replied.

Ligi: Kallas' conduct in security crises has been conscious

Jürgen Ligi (Reform), chairman of the Riigikogu Security Agencies Monitoring Select Committee, wrote on social media that Kaja Kallas has exhibited conscious behavior in security crises and her conduct leaves no room for blackmail.

"The ISS did not detect any alleged Kremlin ties, Russia contacts or trips to Russia, irregular income, violations of the law or sanctions for the premier or her husband, contrary to what has been suggested, in the course of a recent security check. Her loans to her husband('s company) did not clash with Kallas' income or savings, nor were there any discrepancies between the latter," Ligi wrote.

Social Democratic Party (SDE) MP Raimond Kaljulaid said that the director of the ISS told the committee that the PM has not been deemed vulnerable to blackmail.

Margo Palloson left the Riigikogu answering virtually no questions put to him by members of the press.


Follow ERR News on Facebook and Twitter and never miss an update!

Editor: Aleksander Krjukov, Marcus Turovski

Hea lugeja, näeme et kasutate vanemat brauseri versiooni või vähelevinud brauserit.

Parema ja terviklikuma kasutajakogemuse tagamiseks soovitame alla laadida uusim versioon mõnest meie toetatud brauserist: