Expert: 'Hotline' between Estonian, Russian governments would be sensible

Kadri Liik.
Kadri Liik. Source: ERR

In an appearance on ETV's Esimene stuudio political talk show, political analyst and Russia expert Kadri Liik said that the length of the meeting of President Kersti Kaljulaid and President Vladimir Putin surprised her, and that although it certainly wasn't a great breakthrough, it has potential in the longer term.

"I was surprised that the Kremlin took as much time for her. The meeting was supposed to be shorter, but ended up lasting for two and a half hours," Ms Liik pointed out.

Cautiously optimistic, Ms Liik said that the meeting of the two heads of state might make communication on some issues easier, especially those that are less politically loaded.

The lack of an actual subject of the meeting, such as complicated negotiations or other more immediately pressing issues, made it possible to keep it relatively friendly, she added.

"They didn't need to agree on anything. In this sense, the meeting was a courtesy call," Ms Liik said, adding that in such a setting, neither side would want to be rude.

President Putin himself will doubtlessly profit from the meeting, she argued, as it demonstrated in the eyes of the international community that he isn't as isolated as commonly believed.

Though there won't be any change towards suddenly friendly terms between Estonia and Russia, the direction the meeting took does have potential, Ms Liik said: "Some sort of hotline would make sense." There could be occasions in the future where quick and unobstructed communication between the two heads of state could be important. This doesn't exclude the possibility that there might be a time where Estonia has information the Russian government urgently needs, Ms Liik said.

Editor: Dario Cavegn

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