Courtesy the Baltic Course
Estonian President Toomas Hendrik Ilves signed on Monday, at the proposal of the Prime Minister, the decision to release Urmas Paet of the Foreign Minister’s post to enable him to start working in the European Parliament, LETA/Postimees Online reports.
The National Electoral Commission had earlier in the day ruled that Paet will become the replacement member of Vice President of the European Commission, Andrus Ansip, in the European Parliament.
While on Friday still, Paet confirmed in a statement submitted to the Electoral Committee that he waives the European Parliament’s seat and will continue as the Foreign Minister, on Saturday he informed the Committee that he still wishes to take up the work of European Parliament member.
Paet announced on Monday his decision, by explaining that he has worked in the governments of Estonia for the last 11.5 years and been foreign minister for 9.5 years. “I have thus come to the conclusion that there is need for new challenges. Thus I am ready to take up work in the European Parliament to help also in this way to contribute to developments in Estonia and Europe,” said Paet.
After Paet announced last week that he would like to continue as Estonia’s foreign minister, Ansip voiced his opinion that Paet should still come to the European Parliament.
The acting foreign minister will be Foreign Trade Minister Anne Sulling. Prime Minister Taavi Roivas said that the Reform Party board discusses the new ministerial candidate this week.