Estonia's Conservative People's Party criticizes border treaty with Russia

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PHOTO: Laura Kangur / Aldo Luud / Toomas Huik

Neither the Estonian government nor parliament has the authority to conclude a concessionary border treaty with Russia as not a single government has sought the people's mandate for this at a referendum, the extended council of the Estonian Conservative People's Party (EKRE) says.

"We emphasize that the planned treaty is in conflict with the Estonian Constitution, international law and Estonia's interests, as well as the nation's sense of justice. The assertion that Estonia has no territorial claims on Russia is correct - actually it is Russia that has territorial claims on Estonia. This is expressed in the demand to cede 5.2 percent of Estonia's territory forcibly occupied and annexed by Russia to the occupier once and for all without any compromise or compensation on its side. The new borderline including the maritime border would in some places run even further westward than the border of the Stalin-era Estonian Soviet Socialist Republic, that is, the present control line," EKRE said in a statement.

The change in the border's trajectory planned by the government puts a question mark on legal continuity of Estonian statehood, the present Constitution and credibility of Estonia as a sovereign state, the party says.

EKRE demands ending of occupation on Estonian territory. "In case the new border treaty is signed after all, we shall regard it as illegitimate from the moment of conclusion and its signatories, as traitors to the state. We call on all forces and persons who are displeased with what is going on to express sharp protest and condemnation of the government's action."

According to the party, the risk exists that the "treason-committing political forces" are planning amendment of constitutional provisions that prevent the border treaty from being ratified. "Under international law the Tartu Peace Treaty is in effect to this day and territorial concessions to Russia can take place only on the basis of a clear and legally binding mandate given by the people in a referendum," the statement said.

EKRE is the result of a recent merger of People's Union, a predominantly rural former parliamentary party, and the Estonian Patriotic Movement. The party had 7,834 members as of last month.

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