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Estonia's leaders firmly back Kosovo EU, NATO aspirations

President Alar Karis (right) with Speaker of the Kosovar parliament Glauk Konjufca in Tallinn, February 6, 2024.
President Alar Karis (right) with Speaker of the Kosovar parliament Glauk Konjufca in Tallinn, February 6, 2024. Source: Office of the President of the Republic of Estonia

Estonia firmly supports the Balkan nation of Kosovo in its journey towards membership of the European Union, of NATO, and of other major international organizations, Estonia's leaders have said.

Speaker of the Parliament of Kosovo Glauk Konjufca was on an official visit to Estonia on Monday, and met with President Alar Karis and with Prime Minister Kaja Kallas (Reform).

The Estonian head of state tweeted on Monday that "Estonia supports Kosovo on its path towards the EU and NATO."

"Security in the Western Balkans is important to Europe. We acknowledge Kosovo for its efforts to promote stability in the region through dialogue and diplomacy," President Karis went on.

Prime Minister Kallas was in agreement, saying she was: "Glad to welcome Glauk Konjufca at the Stenbock House. Estonia fully supports Kosovo's efforts on its path towards the EU and NATO. We always stand ready to share our reform experience."

Prime Minister Kaja Kallas with speaker of the Kosovar parliament Glauk Konjufca Source: Stenbock House/Social Media

"We always stand ready to share our reform experience," the prime minister continued, via social media.

Riigikogu Speaker Lauri Hussar also met with Glauk Konjufca and also confirmed that Estonia supported Kosovo in its aspirations to become an EU member state and of other international organizations.

"We wish to support you on this path in every possible way," he said, expressing satisfaction over Kosovo's long-awaited visa-free regime with the EU having entered into force at the start of this year.

Speaker Hussar acknowledged the increasingly close relations between Estonia and Kosovo, and assured Mr. Konjufca that Estonia was following the developments in the region with great attention. "We can see that you are focused on implementing reforms and building up your country," he went on, via a Riigikogu press release.

Speaker Konjufca in turn thanked the Estonian state and people for their strong support for Kosovo, and pointed out that Estonia had been one of the first countries to recognize Kosovo's independence back in 2008.

The two speakers also discussed Kosovo-Serbia relations – Serbia does not formally recognize Kosovo as an independent state and continues to claim it as the Autonomous Province of Kosovo and Metohija – and the situation in the Western Balkans in general, as well as Russia's aggression in Ukraine and the need to keep up support to and for Ukraine, collectively, at a European level.

Glauk Konjufca also met with Chairman of the Riigikogu National Defence Committee Kalev Stoicescu (Eesti 200) and committee members, and members of the Estonia-Kosovo Parliamentary Friendship Group. Konjufca visited the e-Estonia Briefing Center and the NATO Cooperative Cyber Defense Center of Excellence (CCDCOE) while in Tallinn, as well.

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Editor: Andrew Whyte

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