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Kaljulaid to Latvian paper: President's direct election no issue in Estonia

Presidents Vējonis and Kaljulaid in Riga, October 2016.
Presidents Vējonis and Kaljulaid in Riga, October 2016. Source: (Läti presidendikantselei)

Unlike Latvian President Raimonds Vējonis, who has called for direct presidential elections to be held already in 2019, President Kersti Kaljulaid said Monday that direct presidential elections were not on the agenda in Estonia.

In an interview with Latvian newspaper Latvijas Avize, Kaljulaid said that Estonians were satisfied with the existing parliamentary democracy and did not see the need for a president elected by the people.

Kaljulaid said that there were no interest groups in Estonia engaged in a discussion about making amendments to the Constitution with regard to direct presidential elections. Estonia recently celebrated the 25th anniversary of its Constitution, and its authors, the members of the Constitutional Assembly, had carried out an analysis of the Constitution, Kaljulaid said.

According to this analysis, Estonia had developed very well and had a liberal democracy in which many freedoms existed. Kaljulaid also said that Estonia had climbed high on the list of countries with the most media freedom, and pointed out that it also ranked very favorably in the corruption perception index.

Vējonis called for the parliament to make amendments to the Constitution concerning direct presidential elections already this autumn. He said that the president should also have the right to initiate the dissolution of the parliament.

According to existing regulation, the Latvian president is elected in the parliament with 51 votes out of 100.

Editor: Dario Cavegn

Source: BNS

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