Minister of Foreign Affairs Sven Mikser (SDE) met with British Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs Boris Johnson in London on Wednesday, where the two officials reaffirmed good bilateral British-Estonian relations as well as discussed the security situation in Europe.
"Defense cooperation between Estonia and the U.K. is an excellent example of the joint activity of allies who have a similar perception of dangers and the security situation," Mikser said according to a ministry press release. "We highly value the presence of our good ally in our region as the leading country in the enhanced Forward Presence (eFP) battle group as well as their participation in the conducting of air policing."
He added that in the context of defense cooperation, it is important to emphasize increasing cyber cooperation as well.
On the subject of the NATO summit to be held in July, Mikser said that it is important to move forward with the decisions adopted at the previous Wales and Warsaw summmits. "Estonia's goal at the NATO summit will be to promote NATO's collective defense capability as well as strengthen the alliance's deterrence stance," he said.
He also referred to the fair distribution of burden in the framework of the alliance, expressing hope that other NATO member states will accelerate the process of reaching the goal of dedicating two percent of their respective GDPs to defense spending.
European unity needed in relations with Russia
Mikser and Johnson likewise discussed relations with Russia, and Johnson thanked Estonia for its support in connection with the nerve agent attack that occurred in Salisbury on March 4.
"So long as Russia continues to undermine the security and stability of Europe and NATO and attempts to discredit democratic societies, we cannot move toward more open and constructive cooperation with them," Mikser stressed.
The two colleagues agreed that in its relations with Russia, Europe must move forward maintaining the same unity and determination it already has.
While in London, Mikser also met with members of the Defence Committee of the House of Commons, with whom he also discussed bilateral defense cooperation as well as the upcoming NATO summit.
Editor: Aili Vahtla