Official name: Republic of Estonia
Short form: Estonia National Day: Independence Day, 24 February.
Estonia declared its independence on this day in 1918.
Estonia became a NATO member state on 29 March 2004.
Estonia became a European Union member state on 1 May 2004.
Lennart Meri began his career as foreign minister at a time when the Estonian state had not yet been restored, and left this post for Finland to become the first post-war Estonian ambassador there, when the Estonian flag was already waving proudly in front of the United Nations. He laid the foundation of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the direct sense of the expression. He conceived of and built up a network of Estonian information offices in several European capitals, and when the day came, it became the first network of Estonian embassies and consulates. His famous speeches and remarkable, super-intellectual behaviour, which drew attention to Estonia, accompanied him throughout his years as president, but evolved when he was serving as foreign minister.
The end of 1991 represents the opening of a new chapter in the life of the restored, independent and democratic Republic of Estonia. Most of the country’s sovereign attributes have been restored or have been substantially strengthened. /---/