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Estonia 200 convenes to discuss European elections, running full list

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Estonia 200 chairwoman Kristina Kallas.
Estonia 200 chairwoman Kristina Kallas. Source: Siim Lõvi/ERR

The board of Estonia 200 convened at its party headquarters on Tuesday morning to discuss its candidates for the upcoming European Parliament elections.

Contrary to statements it had made on Monday, the party has decided to run the full nine-candidate list in the May European elections.

''We've not thrown the towel in - we're certainly going to the European Parliament elections. Let's go with a full list," said party leader Kristina Kallas to ETV current affairs show Aktuaalne kaamera on Tuesday.

The party has in prinicple agreed its list for the European elections, where Estonia is treated as one single voting district, but will only announce this on Friday, Ms Kallas told Aktuaalne kaamera.

She also stated that Estonia 200 voters disillusioned with the current political situation should vote in the European Parliament elections.

Estonia 200 contested its first elections in March, having been formed in the latter half of 2018. The party saw strong showings in opinion polls towards the end of the year, only for these to wane early in 2019, with the party narrowly missing out on the 5% voting threshold needed to send MPs to the Riigikogu.

"Estonia 200 is a political force which should be approached by those who are not satisfied with today's political situation, and who are worried about the future of Estonia," Ms Kallas said on Tuesday.

The country at present does not seem to be focussing on the future so much, as concentrating on the carving up of power, she noted.

Coalition negotiations between the Centre Party, the Conservative People's Party of Estonia (EKRE) and Isamaa, have been ongoing for nearly three weeks now, with the XIV Riigikogu due to convene on Thursday. If the three parties suceed in concluding an agreement, one of the first tasks for the new Riigikogu session is to vote on whether the tripartite coalition, which has 57 seats in the 101-seat parliament, will actually be in office.

"This is worrying, and this is why Estonia 200 is not ready to go anywhere, and will continue fighting. We will continue to make this long-term plan for Estonia's future," added Ms Kallas.

Centre Party member Raimond Kaljulaid told ERR on Tuesday that speculation that he may run for election to the European Parliament on Estonia 200's list of candidates was not true.

According to BNS, Estonia 200's membership has passed the 600 mark, after 50 joined on Monday, the party says. The party's membership, now a reported 633, passed the necessary 500 needed to legally register as a party in late 2018.

Mr Kaljulaid has, however, decided to serve as an MP.

The 2019 European Parliament elections will take place from 23-26 May.

Editor: Aili Vahtla

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