MP Hannes Hanso (SDE) is on a two-week visit to Africa to promote Estonia's bid for a non-permanent seat on the UN Security Council.
In the framework of the Estonian campaign, Mr Hanso will participate in meetings in Johannesburg and Cape Town, South Africa, Maseru, Lesotho, Mbabane and Lobamba, Eswatini, and Maputo, Mozambique, the Riigikogu Press Service said.
It will be determined this June whether or not Estonia will earn a non-permanent seat on the UN Security Council for the 2020-2021 period, a goal first set by Andrus Ansip's government in 2005. Estonia is competing against Romania, who has previously held a non-permanent seat on the council. Of the Baltics, Lithuania held a non-permanent seat on the Security Council during the 2014-2015 period.
Estonia's aspirations of earning a seat on the UN Security Council have previously been criticised by former two-term President Toomas Hendrik Ilves and former two-time Prime Minister Mart Laar.
Mr Ilves said in 2012 already that the money spent on Estonia's bid for a non-permanent seat may mean a lot of beneficial things remaining undone, and that Estonia was tying up its financial and human resources in something where the country's actual opportunities to influence decisions were in appearance only.
Mr Laar has previously said that a non-permanent seat on the UN Security Council would in no way improve Estonia's own security, as the country's eastern neighbour, which poses the primary threat to Estonia's security, holds a permanent seat and thus veto power on the council. Thus Estonia would not be able to actually defend its allies in need of help, such as Georgia or Ukraine, found the former prime minister.
Mr Hanso will be in Africa from 21 January through 4 February.
Editor: Aili Vahtla