Speaking at an EU foreign ministers meeting in Brussels on Monday, Foreign Minister Sven Mikser (SDE) said that the security situation in Ukraine is worsening still, and that the country depends on increased support on the part of the European Union.
The past two years had seen no improvement in the situation in Ukraine, Mr Mikser stressed. "We need to react to the events that took place in the Kerch Strait late last year with a concrete response," he added.
Mr Mikser further said that the sanctions already imposed on Russia are a necessary tool to influence the country's attitude, and that they need to be extended further "also to those who are responsible for what happened in the Kerch Strait."
The ministers reached a political agreement on Monday to impose additional sanctions on specific individuals connected with the Kerch Strait incident, to enter into force after the necessary preparations at the EU level are taken care of.
"Notwithstanding the obstacles caused by Russia's aggression, since 2014 Ukraine has produced specific results in terms of reform," Mr Mikser said. He added that the continuing political support on the part of the EU as well as development aid both help Ukraine stay on track and push for reform even further, among other things in the fight against corruption.
Mr Mikser also stressed that Estonia will continue to support Ukraine in the implementation of reforms, especially in the fields of e-governance and cybersecurity.
The upcoming presidential elections in Ukraine next month were also on the agenda of the meeting. "We expect fair and free elections, but of course we can't underestimate the risk of Russian meddling and interference," the minister said.
He added that in the context of these elections, it is important to contribute to the OSCE monitoring mission to make sure everything goes ahead without major interruptions. Estonia is also planning to send observers, he added.
Editor: Dario Cavegn