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Ex-Centrists Kiik, Aab, Karuse, Hanimägi join Social Democratic Party

SDE chair Lauri Läänemets, ex-Center MPs Jaak Aab, Ester Karuse, Tanel Kiik, Andre Hanimägi and MP and former SDE chair Jevgeni Ossinovski. January 5, 2024.
SDE chair Lauri Läänemets, ex-Center MPs Jaak Aab, Ester Karuse, Tanel Kiik, Andre Hanimägi and MP and former SDE chair Jevgeni Ossinovski. January 5, 2024. Source: Siim Lõvi/ERR

MPs Tanel Kiik, Andre Hanimägi, Ester Karuse and Jaak Aab, who quit the opposition Center Party last week, are officially joining the coalition Social Democratic Party (SDE) on Tuesday.

SDE secretary general and MP Reili Rand said that in addition to the four ex-Center members, around ten or so more people will be joining the party as well. As the membership applications are still in the hands of the party's chapter chairs, the exact number will be revealed at the SDE board meeting on Tuesday night.

Kiik, Hanimägi, Karuse and Aab announced at a press conference last Friday that they were resigning from the Center Party and would be joining the SDE.

MPs Kersti Sarapuu and Enn Eesmaa both resigned from the Center Party as well, neither of whom has current plans to join another party instead.

This past fall, MPs Tõnis Mölder and Janus Karilaid and party member Triin Varek were among those who quit the Center Party and joined the opposition Isamaa instead. MP Maria Jufereva-Skuratovski, meanwhile, left Center for the coalition Reform Party.

The Center Party, which at its peak boasted a membership of more than 15,000, had 12,800 registered members as of midday Tuesday.

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Editor: Aili Vahtla

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