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Estonia re-elects president

Estonia re-elects president
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Estonia’s parliament has overwhelmingly re-elected the president Toomas Hendrik Ilves for a second term in office.

The former US citizen sailed through in the first round of voting with a majority of more than two-thirds of MPs.

It is largely a ceremonial post but the result boosts Estonia’s efforts to be seen as stable and reliable.

“I am ready to serve the Estonian state and all the people who live in Estonia, regardless of their world view and their mother tongue,” Ilves said in a thank you speech before parliament.

That was a reference to the Baltic state’s large Russian-speaking minority.

Ilves has sought to be inclusive of ethnic Russians but has not been afraid to speak his mind about Russia, while maintaining cordial relations with Moscow.

In a radio debate earlier this month, he said that Russia could not be considered as a country governed by the rule of law and criticised its lack of press freedom.