Kaljulaid to Foreign Policy: I hate EKRE politicians' behavior

President Kersti Kaljulaid in the Riigikogu, wearing a sweatshirt that says
President Kersti Kaljulaid in the Riigikogu, wearing a sweatshirt that says "Speech is Free," as members of Jüri Ratas' second government take their oaths of office. Source: Anna Aurelia Minev/ERR

In an interview with American magazine Foreign Policy, President Kersti Kaljulaid said that she hates the inciting behavior of Conservative People's Party of Estonia (EKRE) politicians, apologizing for the impression this may leave of Estonia.

"I hate them for their behavior, and I apologize for the image this might give," Kaljulaid said when asked by a Foreign Policy journalist how concerned she is about EKRE's behavior and position as a member of the government coalition, considering misogynistic, antisemitic, homophobic and racist comments its politicians have made.

"Decent people do not behave themselves this way. That it is in any way OK to show these signs is not a viewpoint we share in Estonia. I now have to explain their stupid moves and claw back the territory," the head of state said in an interview given shortly before the May 26 European Parliament elections.

According to Kaljulaid, she has spoken to EKRE ministers about this issue, adding that their common understanding is that one cannot properly function in an international, global society if they keep irritating people, regardless of whether one believes the things they say or not. "I have a nagging doubt that some of these people don't believe what they do," she aded.

Foreign Policy published an article on Thursday titled "Estonia Battles Its Elected Racists," in which it provided an overview of how, similarly to several other European countries, right-wing populist and euroskeptic powers have seen a significant rise in popularity in Estonia, where they made it to the government for the first time in the form of EKRE.


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Editor: Aili Vahtla

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