Russian Embassy slams Riigikogu statement supporting Ukraine

The Russian Embassy in Tallinn on Tuesday published a statement criticising the statement in support of Ukraine adopted by the Riigikogu on Monday.

Commenting on the statement with which the Riigikogu on Monday condemned the attack on Ukrainian vessels in the Kerch Strait, the Russian Embassy referenced the famous quote by Roman statesman Cato the Elder, who used to conclude his speeches in the Senate by saying, "Furthermore, I consider that Carthage must be destroyed."

"The laurels of that Roman provide no peace of mind to a number of politicians in Europe and on the other side of the ocean," the Russian Embassy said, adding that in the opinion of these politicians, "Russia is to blame for everything" — from the US elections to the referendum on the UK.

"Unfortunately, this also holds true for everything that we can see in Estonia now," the embassy continued, observing that the statement adopted by the Riigikogu reiterates already customary phrases regarding Russian aggression against Ukraine and calls for the introduction of additional sanctions.

"It is striking that [the statement] contains not a single word about the individuals who gave the criminal order to the Ukrainian vessels to sail through the Kerch Strait, ignore warnings and not stop," the statement reads. "One is left with the impression that Kiev was prepared to sacrifice the crews of three ships for the opportunity to lay the blame on Russia. The question we would like to ask those accusing Russia is — how would other countries, including Estonia, have acted if a similar raid had taken place in their territorial waters?"

According to the Russian Embassy, the blame for what happened lies with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, who is trying to secure a second term in office at any cost.

Estonia's wish for Russia to be punished further aggravates relations between the two countries, the embassy added.

"It is absolutely clear that this clearly runs counter to the wish of our countries to introduce neighbourly, equal and mutually beneficial relations," the Russian Embassy stated.

Riigikogu statement submitted by overwhelming majority

With the Statement of the Riigikogu in Support of the Sovereignty and Territorial Integrity of Ukraine in Connection with the Aggression in the Kerch Strait, submitted by 89 MPs and approved on Monday, Estonia expresses its support for Ukraine's inalienable right to protect its territorial integrity and sovereignty.

The statement condemns last week's attack by vessels of the Russian Federation on Ukrainian ships passing through the Kerch Strait, which separates the Black Sea from the Sea of Azov, en route to the Ukrainian port of Mariupol, in which several Ukrainian seamen were wounded and over 20 more were detained by Russia.

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