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Sep 10, 2021
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Postimees: Estonian politicians remembered about Russian voters

“In the upcoming municipal elections, the Party of Centrists and the conservative nationalist party EKRE, according to some sources, will have to divide one electorate – the Russian-speaking, and its most conservative part. What results will this lead to? “

– asks the Estonian newspaper Postman (“Postman”), which published an interview with two politicians – Michael Kylvart (Party of the centrists) and Martha Helme (EKRE)

Postimees: Estonian politicians remembered about Russian voters

And if the Party of Centrists has always been focused on the Russian-speaking electorate, promising to preserve, in particular, the Russian-speaking education, then the nationalists EKRE have long been famous for their ambiguous statements. The same Mart Helme, just four years ago, proposed to deprive Estonian residents with gray passports of the right to take part in local elections, the newspaper reminds.

“Yes, there was a case. Now times have changed. National fears that arose on the basis of the “bronze nights” no longer play such a role in our society, “

– Helme admits and adds that he does not consider it necessary to limit the Russian language in the public life of Estonia.

“We speak Russian with you now! I don’t think there will be any restrictions. We do have a parallel society that cannot be ignored. It would be wise to try and reach out to everyone. I make no secret of the fact that we have different approaches in different areas of life. May 9 will never be a holiday for Estonians, just as February 24 is not a holiday for all Russians. The difference between these approaches will not disappear anywhere for some time. The national question exists, but it is not worth playing on it “,

– quotes him Postman

The only thing that Mart Helme and his party continues to insist on is that all Estonian citizens must learn Estonian, but it is impossible to force this to be done, which means that a special program is required, which should be started from kindergartens, and not from schools.

Learning Estonian is the only requirement EKRE, assures the deputy head of the party. He has no doubt that those Russians who have lived in Estonia for a long time have already got used to this idea, and their children understand that knowing the state language gives some advantages. At the same time, no one demands that Russians abandon their roots and their culture, stressed Helme, who just a few years ago assured that there are no prospects for integrating Russians into Estonian society, and Russian children born in Estonia are hostile to the state. like previous generations.

“The only way for local Russians is assimilation, you said: there are only two choices – either across the Narova River, or assimilation. And this is not just rhetoric! If you have changed your ideological orientation, it would be correct to say it clearly: politics is changing, concepts are changing, and now we see it differently, ”

– Helme criticizes the Russian-speaking Estonian – the mayor of Tallinn Mikhail Kylvart

It seems that before the municipal elections, the Centrists and EKRE will fight for the title of the most pro-Russian party in order to get the votes of Russian voters.

Own. corr. FSK
In the photo of the deputy chairman of the EKRE party Mart Helme

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