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Foreign Minister Urmas Paet: European Union Must Clearly Establish Primary Interests in Relations with Russia


No. 358-E

At the meeting of the European Union foreign ministers in Brussels yesterday, Foreign Minister Urmas Paet said that the European Union’s co-operation with Russia is necessary and the European Union should more clearly prioritise the areas in which it wishes to see progress.

Estonia feels that Russia’s accession to the World Trade Organisation (WTO) is essential as it would be a step closer to a new European Union-Russia partnership agreement and a European Union free trade agreement with Russia. “But only after Russia has fulfilled the obligations it accepted through accession to the WTO can we proceed with trade liberalisation,” Paet stated.
“On the topic of the modernisation of Russia, the European Union emphasises adhering to human rights, rule of law, civil society, and the development of democracy in Russia in addition to co-operation in the economic and technology sectors,” Paet noted.

In connection with the upcoming Duma elections in Russia in December of this year and the presidential election in March of next year, Estonia is supporting the implementation of the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe’s (OSCE) long-time observation mission in Russia.

In talking about the EU-Russia visa dialogue, Paet said that it is first and foremost important to fulfil the technical conditions, through the dialogue is also influenced by general political and rule of law developments in Russia.

Additional information:
Helen Ennok, press spokesperson, Estonia’s Permanent Representation to the EU
+32 474 98 16 57

+372 637 7654


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