Estonia to expell permanent residents who choose to take Russian citizenship

Kaja Kallas, Prime Minister of Estonia

© APA | Kaja Kallas, Prime Minister of Estonia

# 09 January 2024 12:06 (UTC +04:00)

Prime Minister of Estonia Kaja Kallas (Reform) has confirmed that the government is looking at options for deporting any permanent residents of Estonia who choose to take Russian citizenship, in response to a letter from a Center Party MP, APA reports citing Postimees.

"For example, the Russian Federation has rehearsed attacks on the Baltic states during military maneuvers (referring to the "Zapad" exercises – ed.), constantly presents, via official channels, a hostile and false narratives about Western nations and, most recently, has reinstated the practice of orchestrating illegal migration into the EU" prime minister said.

Kallas a former lawyer, called to mind Estonia's status as a democratic nation following the rule of law, noting that revoking any long-term residence permit is provided for in § 241 of the Aliens Act, in cases where that long-term resident and foreign national poses a clear and present threat to public order and national security.

"In addition, when an individual who resides in Estonia opts to obtain citizenship of the Russian Federation at a time when Russia is attacking the Ukrainian state and its people indicates that, if necessary, as part of a general mobilization, they are ready to join the Russian Army and participate in those attacks on Ukraine," Kallas went on, calling this already a security threat and a clear signal which cannot be ignored – indeed the Police and Border Guard Board (PPA) is obliged to investigate whether such an act constitutes a statement of support for state-sponsored terrorism and an action directed against Estonia and its allies.

Any individual who has resided in Estonia for a long period of time will have had plenty of opportunity to gain a true grasp of the realities of Russia's attack on Ukraine, Kallas said, an attack which has violated all principles of international law, while Russia has been condemned by bot the Riigikogu and the Council of Europe as a terrorism-supporting state.

Kallas had been responding to a letter from MP Aleksandr Chaplõgin (Center), who called the statement made by Interior Minister Lauri Läänemets to the effect that "disturbing," adding that this has caused angst among many long-term residents of Estonia, and inquiring both about the legal basis for the cliam, and whether Läänemets' statement was the official government line on the issue.

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