Putin's goal, “Pandora's box” and the end of the war in Ukraine: an interview with the Estonian Foreign Minister


Putin's goal, Pandora's box and the end of the war in Ukraine: an interview with the Estonian Foreign Minister

Estonian Foreign Minister Urmas Reinsalu is confident that Ukraine will win the war/Collage channel 24 site

On August 2, the newly appointed Minister of Foreign Affairs of Estonia Urmas Reinsalu made his first foreign visit – it was Ukraine. He visited the Zhytomyr region – it is this region that Estonia will help to rebuild after the war in Ukraine.


On the termination of issuance of visas to Russians, sanctions policy, military assistance, the threat from Russia to Europe, and whether Estonia is ready to recognize Russia as a state sponsor of terrorism and what is the likelihood of the use of nuclear weapons – Urmas Reinsalu Exclusively said in an interview with Channel 24.

“All these steps are positive, but not enough”

Ministry of Foreign Affairs Estonia is preparing proposals to the European Union to stop issuing visas to Russian citizens. But in the EU they say that they cannot completely ban the issuance of Schengen visas to Russians, since the sanctions regime is aimed precisely at the Russian authorities and the elite. Tell us what these proposals will be?

The price of aggression for Russia must rise. It is good that the European Union has found a compromise and consensus for the adoption of seven packages of sanctions. But we must immediately accept additional packages of sanctions so that the war costs the aggressor very dearly. We have already talked about this, in particular, with the US Foreign Secretary. As for the EU, all states should also come to a common decision on this.

Now there is a war, children are dying from Russian missiles. Meanwhile, Russian tourists, citizens of the aggressor state that is committing genocide on the territory of Ukraine, go to see the Louvre or other tourist delights. This is wrong, EU borders should be closed to Russian citizens.

Putin's goal,

Minister of Foreign Affairs of Estonia Urmas Reinsalu/Photo by Valentina Polishchuk, Channel 24

Estonia has provided Ukraine with arms worth a total of 241 million euros. This is 0.8% of the country's GDP and a third of the defense budget. How much more weapons and other assistance is your country willing to provide to Ukraine in the future?

I cannot give specific amounts, but the Estonian government is preparing an additional military aid package for Ukraine. Before the start of a full-scale invasion, we took an important practical step by providing missiles for Javelin anti-tank systems and some other weapons. It was very useful to the Ukrainians in the first days of the new stage of the war. As a member of parliament, I have repeatedly been at the front, then in April in Kharkiv, and consulted with the military about what kind of weapons Ukraine needs the most.

Of course, all the steps already taken to provide arms and humanitarian aid are positive. However, in my opinion, this is still not enough. We should talk about numbers at the level of hundreds of billions of dollars. After all, war is very expensive – both in the humanitarian plane and the cost of weapons. We, as a European, as a global community, have not yet reached the level of assistance that could be considered sufficient.

Putin's goal,

“We must talk about numbers at the level of one hundred billion”/Photo by Valentina Polishchuk, Channel 24

“This is a genocidal war, the purpose of which is to destroy the state of Ukraine”

Russian troops recently practiced imitation of missile strikes by the Baltic countries, including on the territory of Estonia. This was stated by the Chancellor of the Ministry of Defense of Estonia Kusti Salm. In addition, on June 18, a Mi-8 helicopter of the Russian border guard violated Estonian airspace. What threat does Russia pose to the Baltic States today?

This issue has a tactical and strategic component. The tactical one is that Russia is concentrating its armed forces in Ukraine, taking them away from our borders. They do not have enough strength to attack Estonia or carry out provocations, and this is good. From a strategic perspective, Russia's actions pose a threat not only to its neighboring countries, but to the entire security system of Europe.

If the war goes into a protracted phase or freezes and there is no clear victory for Ukraine, this will be a signal that in In the 21st century, with the help of tanks in the center of Europe, you can violate state borders and arrange genocides. It will be a threat to all mankind.

Estonia became the first country to recognize Russia's actions in Ukraine as genocide. We have enough arguments that this is not just an act of aggression, this is a genocidal war, the purpose of which is to destroy the state of Ukraine.

Putin, his ideologists and minions hide it. It is vital to give the world and our partners a clear signal that the war in Ukraine is not a matter of Luhansk and Donetsk regions or Crimea or any other part of Ukraine. This is not an internal issue, but a global threat.

Putin's goal is complete control over Ukraine. The force of arms and willpower of the Western countries must stop the Putin regime on the path of aggression. Only immediate and inevitable retribution for criminal acts, the strength of the Ukrainian army and the willpower of the Western world will be able to stop the killer.

Putin's goal,

“We have there are enough arguments that this is not just an act of aggression”/Photo of Channel 24, Valentina Polishchuk

Russia's war in Ukraine has turned into a bloody terror against Ukrainian citizens. In particular, this can be seen from the latest events in Yelenovka, where Russia cynically killed Ukrainian prisoners of war, thus violating all international treaties. Is Estonia ready to recognize Russia as a state sponsor of terrorism?

Russia systematically commits acts of genocide on the territory of Ukraine. And, of course, Russia is a state sponsor of terrorism. After all, we see these horrors, the purpose of which is to spread fear among both Ukrainians and the world community. I would be very happy if we develop a mechanism that will allow us to recognize Russia as a state sponsor of terrorism at the European level.

“This quiet totalitarianism has been growing before our eyes for years”

According to European Commission Vice President Maros Sefcovic, work on the eighth package of European Union sanctions against Russia will continue in the fall. What might this include?

A good signal is that for the seven packages of sanctions, European countries have come to an agreement. This gives hope that we will be able to accept the next ones. Estonia will submit new proposals for sanctions in the coming weeks. In addition, there will be an informal meeting of EU foreign ministers in Prague where we will discuss this. We are also constantly consulting with the Ukrainian authorities regarding further sanctions pressure on Russia.

It is very important that the entire population of the aggressor country feel these sanctions. Of course, the greatest responsibility lies with the Russian authorities, the organizers of the aggression at the highest level, the military command. At the same time, personal responsibility lies with the perpetrators – Russian soldiers who commit crimes against humanity.

Moreover, passive responsibility for all this horror, which the whole world is watching, lies in Russian society. They are citizens of a state that is now committing genocide. Yes, there are isolated brave people in Russia who are trying to resist the system. There are now more political prisoners in Russia than under Brezhnev. This quiet totalitarianism has been growing before our eyes over the years. The results were not long in coming. And we must answer.

Putin's goal,

“Russia systematically commits genocide on the territory of Ukraine”/Photo by Valentina Polishchuk, Channel 24

“The price of these lighter sanctions is the blood of Ukrainians”

What specific steps should be taken to weaken Russia's energy exports?

In total there are two ways. Apply a complete embargo on Russian energy, which is on the European market. Purely in practice, this will increase the cost of war for the Putin regime. And it will help to end this war in the near future. Both morally and from a security perspective, this is correct. And I support such steps. There is another way – to leave the sanctions at the current level. For European society, it seems to be easier. However, the truth is that the price for this is the lives of civilians and the military of Ukraine. The price of these lighter sanctions is the blood of Ukrainians. It shouldn't be like this.

The purpose of the sanction is two things:

  • The first is to punish.
  • The second is not only to punish, and in this way to fight back, to force the aggressor to stop.

How to assess the level of sanctions already imposed by European countries? Only those sanctions that will lead to the end of the war in the near future are sufficient. This means that sanctions really work.

“Our willpower is stronger”

What do you think can stop Putin?

Putin's system works. Unfortunately, this is a reality that we must accept. This means that only one thing will stop Putin – an armed Ukrainian army and the willpower of the Western world, which will not be afraid to supply the right weapons in the right quantity and impose new sanctions against Russia.

Putin believes that the winter will be problematic for European countries because of energy prices. Our answer should be before winter – no.

Putin's goal, Pandora's box and the end of the war in Ukraine: an interview with the Estonian Foreign Minister

“Estonia became the first country to recognize Russia's actions in Ukraine as genocide”/Photo by Valentina Polishchuk, Channel 24

We want to increase the isolation of Russia through legal responsibility, providing Ukraine with heavy weapons and financial assistance that will support its economy. To make Russia feel: our willpower is stronger. The question is who has more money and weapons, who has more friends in the world or who has a nuclear bomb. It is a matter of stronger willpower to defend the values ​​that we think make us free peoples.

Nuclear weapons are often used in Russia. What do you think, is there a real threat and who could be hit?

It should be understood that the nuclear threat has been and will be. But there is symmetry. A user of nuclear weapons must be prepared that the same will be used against him. I think that Russia will not open this “Pandora's box”. She is trying to intimidate Ukrainians and the world, however, as I see it, not very successfully.

Russia is trying to intimidate Western leaders into not providing Ukraine with much-needed weapons and assistance. Again, this is a matter of willpower – whether we are afraid of a terrorist, a murderer and an organizer of genocide or not. The answer should be “we are not afraid.” The nuclear security system operates on the principle of symmetry, and Russia understands this. The aggressor is trying to manipulate this issue, which is an additional confirmation of the terrorist nature of the Russian state. /08/cel-putina-jashhik-pandory-i-okonchanie-vojny-v-ukraine-intervju-s-glavoj-mid-estonii-f285358.jpg” alt=”Putin's goal, “Pandora's box” and the end of the war in Ukraine: an interview with the Estonian Foreign Minister” />

“I think that Russia will not open this “Pandora's box”/Photo by Valentina Polishchuk, Channel 24< /em>

Do you think there is a threat of Russia's invasion of other countries? What determines who is at risk and why?

NATO is a collective defense system, and we Estonians are very pleased to welcome Finland and Sweden, who will soon become members of the Alliance. And in the future, we will be glad to see well-trained Ukrainian troops in our Euro-Atlantic family. As for the threat, it is not about this or that country. This is a danger to the entire system of European security. I believe that Russia is a threat to all mankind.

When, in your opinion, will Russia's war against Ukraine end, and how?

The war will end when Putin ends it. And this will not happen because of diplomatic relations or any sentimental arguments. The price of aggression is too high. This means fighting.

We need strong and systematic signals that Russia will feel. Armament for Ukraine, sanctions for Russia. Partners must be united in this. We must reach a level where the interests of the political group in Russia will be under serious threat.

What future do you see for Ukraine? And for Russia?

Estonia sees Ukraine as a future winner in this war, a member of the European Union, our common European home and NATO. I would see a bright future for Russia after the second Nuremberg trials, where Putin and his henchmen sit.

Leave a Reply