Feature

Feature: Behind the European Intervention Initiative

05.07.18 ... Last year, 25 of the EU's 28 member states committed to the Permanent Structured Cooperation (PESCO) scheme, spurring a wide array of specific military projects and investment pledges, French President Emmanuel Macron's European Intervention Initiative being one of them.

"It's the rules, stupid!" Estonia and EU financial framework negotiations

02.07.18 ... The European Union is currently in the early stages of its negotiations about the next Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) for the 2021-2027 period. Though funding may be received through new priorities, co-financing rules are a source of worry for the Baltic states, and especially to Estonia.

Video: Overnight storm causes floods in Tallinn streets, damage to TV house

22.06.18 ... Last night saw a storm in the Tallinn area which wrought havoc with transport and even contributed to curtailing the last few minutes of ETV's broadcast of the Argentina-Croatia World Cup football match.

Netherlands recruits Baltic states to compensate for effects of Brexit

12.06.18 ... The Netherlands is building new coalitions within the EU to compensate for the loss of the UK as the union's main free trade champion, and has found partners in the Baltic states. At the same time, a domestic policy issue involving gas supplies and the Dutch stance on Russia have the potential to put what has been dubbed the New Hanseatic League to the test.

In case of crisis, NATO lacking capability to quickly move troops eastwards

08.06.18 ... While NATO is working to establish a "credible deterrent" on its eastern flank, swift and large-scale allied troop movements across Europe currently aren't possible. The infrastructure as well as the planning capacity of the Cold War is largely gone and now needs to be rebuilt step by step, an overview presented at the Dutch Ministry of Defence showed.

Faroe Islands look to Estonian example setting up own e-government system

14.05.18 ... The Faroe Islands are an archipelago of 18 tiny and remote islands in the North Atlantic. An autonomous country within the Kingdom of Denmark, which already has an e-state of its own in place, they decided in favour of Estonia"s approach—for technological as well as political reasons, writes Richard Martyn-Hemphill.

Macron, Merkel in the White House: Back to basics

08.05.18 ... French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel were both in Washington D.C. recently, on visits to the White House. Whereas President Macron was greeted with a lavish state reception, Chancellor Merkel’s visit was a modest working visit.

Social Democrats challenging the status quo now a matter of survival

22.04.18 ... What seemed to be just an option has now become a necessity. Coming up with proposals for real change appears to be the only way for Social-Democratic parties not to disappear in an ever larger undifferentiated political center. Both in Germany and in Estonia, the current phase of transition will determine the fortunes of SPD and SDE in the coming months.

Feature: Ruussaar in Eastern Ukraine, Part 4 | Corruption

31.03.18 ... ERR's Ainar Ruussaar traveled to Eastern Ukraine in February this year as part of a training program for local journalists. In the fourth and last article of his series, Ruussaar talks about an aspect of Ukrainian life that has decisively affected the country's fate as well as its reputation: corruption.

Feature: Ruussaar in Eastern Ukraine, Part 3 | Mariupol

25.03.18 ... In the third feature of his four-part travel series, ERR's Ainar Ruussaar describes his destination, Mariupol, a historic city, resort town on the Sea of Azov, and industrial center all in one.

Feature: Ruussaar in Eastern Ukraine, Part 2 | On the train

18.03.18 ... ERR's Ainar Ruussaar traveled to Eastern Ukraine in February as part of a training program for local journalists. This is the second of his four-part report on his trip, in which he talks about his journey from Tallinn to Mariupol. ERR News is publishing Ruussaar's account of the situation in the area over the next few weekends.

Feature: Ruussaar in Eastern Ukraine, Part 1 | War

11.03.18 ... ERR's Ainar Ruussaar traveled to Eastern Ukraine in February as part of a training program for local journalists. ERR News is publishing Ruussaar's account of the situation in the area over the next few weekends. This is the first of four parts, where he describes his arrival in the Mariupol area.

Feature: Why the radical right is here to stay

04.03.18 ... If there is one thing we can take for granted after the rise of the radical right in Europe is that the populist parties are here to stay. To understand the exclusive relationship between the people and these factions, we have to look beyond the mere politics of scaremongering and unveil the asymmetries of a dislocated class conflict.

Riigikogu thanks those instrumental to state's creation, preservation

22.02.18 ... The Riigikogu adopted a declaration on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the Republic of Estonia on Thursday to thank all those who were instrumental to the creation, defense, preservation, and restoration of the Estonian state.

Feature: The case for a progressive income tax in Estonia

18.02.18 ... Estonia’s income tax scheme based on a flat rate worked well during the boom years. But as EU structural support payments are about to shrink, the government is looking for new sources of revenue, and inequality is growing, it is time Estonia considered coming up with a progressive income tax of its own, Federico Plantera writes.

Part 3: First blood spilled for sovereign Estonia on Feb. 25

17.02.18 ... In the third and final part of a special three-part series dedicated to the pivotal events of Feb. 23-25, 1918, Piret Kriivan, host of Vikerraadio's "Estonia's Story," spoke with Tallinn City Archives director Küllo Arjakas about the events of Feb. 25, including what was arguably the first battle fought in defense of the newly independent Republic of Estonia.

Feature: Crimea and Ukraine's role in ongoing disinformation campaigns

15.02.18 ... To talk about a new multipolar world order and current threats to global security without mentioning the annexation of Crimea is the same as using a compass that indicates only three of the four cardinal directions, Oleh Pokalchuk and Marina Dadinova write in a recent piece for the International Centre for Defence and Security.

Part 2: Salvation Committee begins issuing orders on Feb. 24

10.02.18 ... In the second part of a special three-part series dedicated to the pivotal events of Feb. 23-25, 1918, Piret Kriivan, host of Vikerraadio's "Estonia's Story," spoke with University of Tartu Associate Professor of Estonian History Ago Pajur about the events of Feb. 24, including how German troops marched on Tallinn and Tartu even as copies of the Estonian Declaration of Independence continued to spread across the country.

Part 1: Estonian independence proclaimed in Pärnu on Feb. 23

03.02.18 ... In the first part of a special three-part series dedicated to the pivotal events of Feb. 23-25, 1918, Piret Kriivan, host of the Vikerraadio program "Estonia's Story," spoke with Pärnu Museum director Aldur Vunk about the events of Feb. 23, including the details surrounding the first proclamation of Estonian independence that night in Pärnu.

Blue Awakening: The next generation of Estonian nationalists

15.01.18 ... Nov. 30, 2017 marked the fifth anniversary of the youth organization of the Conservative People’s Party of Estonia (EKRE), Sinine Ӓratus ("Blue Awakening"). Blue Awakening was founded and is currently led by Tartu city councillor and EKRE board member, Ruuben Kaalep. Although EKRE is a relatively new party, founded only in 2012, they are growing rapidly and have come in third in Estonia's monthly party ratings.

Michael Kofman: What actually happened during Zapad 2017

23.12.17 ... German tabloid Bild reported earlier this week that in its Zapad 2017 exercises, Russia ran scenarios that included an invasion of the Baltic states, Poland, Finland, Sweden, and Norway, and bombing Germany. Security and defense expert and global fellow at the Wilson Center's Kennan Institute, Michael Kofman, provides a more realistic account of what Russia's military exercises actually were.

November 1917: Estonian Provincial Assembly declares itself supreme power

28.11.17 ... Following the October Revolution, the Estonian Provincial Assembly declared itself the supreme power in the Governorate of Estonia on Nov. 28, 1917. This marked the beginning of Estonia's political struggle for independence, and also the violent backlash the country would face over the following years.

The specter of Red October still haunts the Baltic states

07.11.17 ... The Baltic states followed a unique trajectory following the October Revolution, breaking free from Bolshevik power and enjoying two decades of independence. When Sovietization finally arrived, the region’s peoples responded by leading double lives. It was a tactic that ultimately played an important role in hastening the Soviet Union’s demise.

Kaur Kender: The world's most diseased place for the Estonian language

14.09.17 ... The case brought against him, and especially the prosecutor's appeal of the first-tier court's acquittal based on both the constitutional freedom of art as well as the lack of a damaged party is nothing short of an all-out and totalitarian attack on an essential freedom of Estonian society, and eventually also an attack on the Estonian language itself, Kender writes.

Dmitri Teperik: A turning point for Ukraine’s national resilience

11.09.17 ... In a few months, Ukraine will commemorate the fourth anniversary of its rebirth as a nation in a military conflict with Russia that has initiated many previously badly missed reforms, changed the security perceptions of many Ukrainians, and reshaped societal values while continuing to influence the country’s socio-economic development.

Commissioner Věra Jourová: EU law needs to keep up with digital development

04.09.17 ... The European Union needs to keep up in terms of digital development, and its approach to corporate law needs to be updated accordingly, EU Commissioner Věra Jourová said on Monday. Jourová is attending the Justice Ministry's conference on the subject in Tallinn on Sept. 4 and 5.

Steinmeier: History mustn’t be used as a weapon

23.08.17 ... While Aug. 23 marked a low point in history with the signing of the pact in 1939 that would later bring so much destruction and death to Europe, with the Baltic Way in 1989 fifty years later it also stood for optimism and courage and the Baltic longing for freedom, German president Frank-Walter Steinmeier said in his speech at the Estonian Academy of Sciences.

Kaljulaid: Conflict between national and liberal values doesn't exist

21.08.17 ... In her speech given on the occasion of the 26th anniversary of the restoration of Estonia’s independence in 1991, President Kersti Kaljulaid spoke out against replacing dealing with the country’s actual issues with trumped-up and artificial conflicts—the latter of which were a threat to democracy.

Estonia hosts the EU presidency in the usual casual style

07.07.17 ... The Estonian Presidency of the Council of the European union is now well under way, and so far there have been no major glitches. ERR News went along to Tallinn Creative Hub on Thursday, to the Informal Meeting of Justice and Home Affairs Ministers to see how things are coming along.

Palling: Uber law will have 'huge economic and environmental benefits'

19.06.17 ... The Riigikogu passed the so-called rideshare bill into law last week, regulating the business of platforms like Uber and Taxify. According to Kalle Palling (Reform), instrumental in the bill’s introduction, this kind of legislation is the litmus test of any tech-savvy state.

On the hunt for contraband cigarettes

16.06.17 ... Over the past four years the Tax and Customs Board (MTA) has managed to reduce the market share of contraband cigarettes by half. The success of their work is based on large-scale operations, confiscating millions of cigarettes that if sold would benefit not the state, but organized crime. The following is an account of one of their most successful operations—involving a contraband cigarette factory in Tartu County.

Professor: Populism and idiocy have a natural limit

16.06.17 ... According to professor of particle physics and television presenter Brian Cox, the life-expectancy of a post-factual world is necessarily limited, as it will inevitably lead to the collapse of civilisation.

Summary of ERR News' June 2017 readership survey

14.06.17 ... The survey asked respondents to answer ten questions. At a total of 123 form submissions, the survey is not representative of all of ERR News' readership, but nonetheless gathered a lot of useful information.

Meri Conference opening panel: EU far from obsolete, common goals strong

13.05.17 ... The 2017 Lennart Meri Conference’s opening panel discussed the prospects of the European Union in an ever-changing environment, the challenges it faces internally, and its direction in terms of more coordinated defense. Speakers included EU foreign policy high representative Federica Mogherini, President Kersti Kaljulaid, and former Italian prime minister Enrico Letta.

Kalev Stoicescu: The significance of Macron's election victory

11.05.17 ... Research fellow at the International Centre for Defence and Security (ICDS) in Tallinn, Kalev Stoicescu, writes that Emmanuel Macron's victory in the French presidential elections is of tremendous importance for Europe, and a defeat for Russian President Vladimir Putin and his efforts to divide the European Union.

Disinformation Review: Russian fear-mongering continues

11.05.17 ... Stoltenberg wants war, NATO’s April exercise in Ādaži was the preparation of the alliance’s upcoming attack on Russia, the Baltic police forces are running cleansing and punitive operations, and Baltic Russians are subject to experiments altering the human psyche: A glimpse of the news coverage of the Russian state media.

Don't go for basic income, go for new work and tax models instead

04.05.17 ... President Kersti Kaljulaid spoke at the St. Gallen Symposium in Switzerland on May 3, calling not for a basic income for everyone in the face of societal change, but instead for openness towards new models and solutions. Here is the president's speech in full.

Gallery: New Triigi-Sõru ferry enters regular service

01.05.17 ... Built in the shipyards of Baltic Workboats in Nasva, the latest of Estonia’s new island ferries, the Soela, will take up regular line service between the islands of Saaremaa and Hiiumaa today Monday. Unlike the larger ferries recently introduced on the routes from the islands to the Estonian mainland, Soela was finished a week before the deadline.

Gallery: MPs Siret Kotka and Martin Repinski get married

01.05.17 ... Members of the Riigikogu for the Center Party, Siret Kotka and Martin Repinski, got married on Sunday. The reception took place at Mäetaguse Manor in Ida-Viru County.

Toronto Estonian House shareholders vote in favor of new Estonian center

27.04.17 ... At a special shareholder meeting on Tuesday evening, shareholders of the Toronto Estonian House voted 67 percent in favor of the Madison Avenue project for a new Estonian center.

Bronze Night's only death still unsolved

26.04.17 ... Dmitri Ganin was killed in a fight outside a bar in Tallinn on the first night of the Bronze Soldier riots in April 2007. To this day, the case of his death remains unsolved, but has since become a tool of anti-Estonian propaganda. ETV's investigative program Pealtnägija took another look at the case ten years after.

Estonia’s reaction to cyber attacks influenced global security policy

25.04.17 ... Though the cyber attacks against state institutions that followed the 2007 Bronze Night riots put Estonia’s digital defenses to the test, the reaction to them and the public debate propelled the country to the forefront of the new field of cyber defense.

Under siege: Events at the Estonian embassy in Moscow

25.04.17 ... During the Bronze Night riots, the Estonian embassy in Moscow was surrounded by protesters, most of them members of the Nashi and Molodaya Rossiya. They threatened the embassy and its staff. Then-ambassador Marina Kaljurand told ERR News in an interview how events unfolded in the Russian capital.

Monument of contention: How the Bronze Soldier was removed

25.04.17 ... In late April 2007, the Estonian authorities removed the Bronze Soldier monument from Tallinn’s Tõnismägi. The unrest that accompanied the relocation have since become known as the Bronze Night riots.

Andrus Ansip: 'We decided to solve the problem before it got out of hand'

25.04.17 ... In 2007, the European Union’s commissioner for the digital single market, Andrus Ansip, was prime minister of Estonia. In his interview with ERR, he talks about how he experienced the events surrounding the removal of the Bronze Soldier ten years ago.

Gallery: US F-35 fighter jets arrive in Estonia

25.04.17 ... Two U.S. F-35 Lightning II stealth Joint Strike Fighters landed at Ämari Air Base on Tuesday afternoon. The new fighter jets are in Europe for several weeks in order to participate in joint training flights together with the aircraft of U.S. and other allied air forces.

Protests in Tallinn against current shape of Rail Baltic project

23.04.17 ... Protesters gathered in Tallinn’s Freedom Square on Saturday to express their objection to the Rail Baltic project in its current form. The “line drawn from Tallinn to Pärnu”, in their opinion, is not based on sufficient research, and will destroy wildlife and have too grave an effect on the environment.

Ryan in Tallinn: US shoulder to shoulder with Estonia against all dangers

22.04.17 ... Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, Paul Ryan, arrived in Tallinn on Saturday, where he met with Prime Minister Jüri Ratas (Center) and later on also President Kersti Kaljulaid. Ryan expressed unwavering support for NATO and promised that the U.S. would stand with Estonia in case of any danger coming to the country.

Gallery: NATO battle group begins service with military parade in Tapa

20.04.17 ... The NATO battle group stationed in Estonia marked the beginning of its service with a ceremony and military parade at the 1st Infantry Battalion's Tapa Army Base on Thursday afternoon.

Essay: Estonian society divided between drivers and inhibitors of change

18.04.17 ... A recently published representative study of the Estonian society shows that global technological and cultural change, the migration wave, and the rise of violence and terrorism are deepening the contradictions between different social groups, writes Peeter Vihalemm, professor emeritus of media studies at the University of Tartu.

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