The Social Democratic Party (SDE) has unveiled its 11 initial candidates for election to the European Parliament this May: Marina Kaljurand, Ivari Padar, Sven Mikser, Monika Haukanõmm, Silver Meikar, Marianne Mikko, Eiki Nestor, Katri Raik, Tanel Talve, Triin Toomesaar and Indrek Tarand. Internal elections will narrow these 11 candidates down to the permitted nine.
Internal elections will determine not only the final list of nine candidates but also the order in which they will appear. As the amended European Parliament Election Act allows for each party to nominate nine candidates, two will have to be eliminated from the current list. The SDE's list will be confirmed on 5 April, when the party's electoral body is scheduled to convene in Tallinn.
SDE chairman Jevgeni Ossinovski has proposed granting the party's top spot in the European elections to former ambassador, diplomat and minister Marina Kaljurand, who also earned the most votes out of any Social Democratic candidate in the 3 March general election.
"Marina has always worthily represented the Estonian people, regardless of whether in Moscow during the difficult times surrounding the Bronze Night, or later on in Washington, where her first duty on the job was to open the [re-established] Washington Estonian School," Mr Ossinovski has previously said in endorsement of her.
The electoral body of the SDE, which is to convene at Tallinn University (TLÜ) early next month, will confirm not only its final candidate list but also the party's manifest ahead of the European elections.
Of other Estonian parties, the Reform Party has also published its candidate list for the European Parliament elections, which is topped by Andrus Ansip, Taavi Rõivas and Urmas Paet.
The European Parliament elections will take place from 23-26 May.
Editor: Aili Vahtla