Today, Foreign Minister Urmas Reinsalu celebrated the centenary of the Tartu Peace Treaty with a joint working lunch with Latvian Foreign Minister Edgars Rinkēvičs, Finnish Foreign Minister Pekka Haavisto and Polish Foreign Minister Jacek Czaputowicz.
Foreign Minister Reinsalu thanked his colleagues for participating in the celebration of the day that holds special importance for Estonia. He stressed that the Tartu Peace Treaty, signed a hundred years ago today, was the birth certificate of the Republic of Estonia because it was the basis for recognising Estonia as a free and independent state. Reinsalu emphasised that the Republic of Estonia was guided by the validity of the Tartu Peace Treaty and legal continuity.
The ministers are also giving welcoming speeches at the formal concert and ceremony at the Vanemuine Concert Hall today. The Tartu Peace Treaty between Estonia and Russia was followed by Russia’s treaties with Poland, Finland, Latvia and Lithuania.
At the working lunch, the ministers discussed ways of advancing topics important for the region, including cooperation in transatlantic relations, the Eastern Partnership, European Union enlargement, and agreeing on the multiannual financial framework of the European Union. They also talked about the Three Seas Initiative, UN Security Council topics, as well as developments in Iran and Iraq.
In transatlantic relations, efforts must continue to bring the positions of the EU and the United States closer, and expand cooperation between the EU and NATO. “A positive effect on transatlantic relations can be expected from the Three Seas Initiative summit held in Tallinn on 16 and 17 June,” Reinsalu said.
When it comes to the Three Seas Initiative, Estonia would like to expand cooperation further north, Reinsalu said. “This is why we would like to invite Finland to attend the summit,” he said. He encouraged Finland to join the 3SI Investment Fund established last year where Estonia plans to invest €20 million.
On the subject of Eastern Partnership countries, it is in the EU’s interests to direct maximum efforts towards helping them enact reforms. “It is crucial to achieve substantial and visible results that have a positive effect on the daily lives of ordinary people in Eastern Partnership countries,” Reinsalu commented.
On European Union enlargement, the Estonian Foreign Minister stressed that the EU had to reach a consensus on launching accession talks with Albania and North Macedonia, preferably before the EU-Western Balkans summit in May. “Not finding a consensus would not send a good signal to the Western Balkans who are waiting for assurances of the EU’s continued support on their chosen path of reforms,” he said.
As an elected member of the UN Security Council, Estonia considers the continued military conflict in Donbas among the most serious issues. “We wish to ensure that Ukraine’s efforts to restore its territorial integrity are acknowledged and supported by the UN,” Reinsalu said.
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
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