Estonia, an EU country that used to be part of the Soviet Union, is understandably not happy about Russia’s actions:
Estonia President Toomas Hendrik Ilves has urged the European Union to rethink its drive to strengthen ties with Moscow in the wake of the conflict in Georgia, his spokesman said Monday.
‘Russia’s military strikes in Georgia toll a knell for many of Europe’s hopes, such as the possibility of sharing common fundamental values with Russia,’ Toomas Sildam said Ilves told the European Union’s foreign policy chief Javier Solana on Sunday.
Sildam said that Ilves wanted the European Union to ‘show Russia that aggression will not be without consequences,’ suspending an agreement on making it easier for Russians to get visas to EU countries, and that ‘the entire spectrum of relations between the European Union and Russia should be re-examined.’
Sildam said Ilves called on the EU to ‘assume a key role in ending the attacks by Russia’s armed forces on civil and military targets in Georgia.
‘It is the European Union that can and should be the strong power that induces the Russian Federation to end its military activity on the territory of the Republic of Georgia,’ Sildam quoted Ilves as saying.
‘War has broken out in Europe, a European nation has fallen victim to the aggression of its neighbour, and the European Union, as the bearer of European values, cannot remain a helpless bystander,’ the president told Solana.
Three Kings notes that:
Estonia has had rocky relations with Russia since becoming independent from the Soviet Union in 1991. The two countries have a long list of political grievances against one another, and Estonia, along with Poland, has been one of the strongest voices for a harder E.U. stance towards Russia.
It is of could entirely predictable that EU member states that were formerly part of the Soviet Union (Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania) or Russian Empire (Poland, Finland) might be especially wary about Russian revanchism.