Reform Party calls on Riigikogu president to bring back EU flags

Estonian and EU flags in the Riigikogu's White Hall.
Estonian and EU flags in the Riigikogu's White Hall. Source: ERR

The parliamentary group of the Reform Party called on President of the Riigikogu Henn Põlluaas (EKRE) on Tuesday to have EU flags returned to the White Hall of the Riigikogu. Põlluaas had the flags removed after his confirmation as speaker.

"Regretfully, we discovered yesterday that leading up to the 15th anniversary of Estonia's membership in the European Union, the EU flags that until then stood next to the Estonian flag in the Riigikogu's White Hall are gone," former Prime Minister Taavi Rõivas (Reform), who raised the issue already on Monday, said in a party press release.

"One of the parties in the government sworn in yesterday is openly eurosceptic, and although the prime minister has confirmed that the government won't change course, the way these symbols are dealt with speaks a different language," Rõivas added.

The Riigikogu is a representative building of the Republic, a place where events take place that are "in accordance" with European values. "Throwing out a flag isn't simply a matter of decoration, but it has a symbolic meaning," he said. "And symbols matter."

The Reform Party's parliamentary group submitted a memorandum to the Board of the Riigikogu on Tuesday demanding that the flags be returned. The party also suggests that the rules on the display of flags on the premises of the Riigikogu should be reviewed, and amended where necessary.

The Board of the Riigikogu is made up of President of the Riigikogu Henn Põlluaas (EKRE) as well as two deputies, currently Siim Kallas (Reform) and Helir-Valdor Seeder (Isamaa). The order to remove the flag was given by Põlluaas.

Editor: Dario Cavegn

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