Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2007-05-09-Speech-3-029"

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". Mr President, I hope I am honourable, even though I am not from Estonia. I asked the leader of our Estonian delegation, Mr Tarand, to speak. Since he will be speaking later on, he asked me to make it clear that the Socialist Group in the European Parliament as a whole is giving its full backing to Estonia, to our Members from Estonia and to the people of Estonia, and that we reject all outside intervention and every intervention on the part of Russia. We affirm not only the principle that embassies and diplomatic premises should be treated with respect, but also that the sovereignty of a country and its people should be respected. If I may add a personal remark, I was born a few months after the end of the war in what was then the Soviet-occupied zone in Eastern Austria. I remember my parents, relatives and friends relating how they were glad that Russian soldiers had come to free us from the Nazi regime, and also know from personal experience that these same people feared the possibility of the Soviet troops staying on as occupiers. It was our good fortune in Austria – a good fortune bestowed on us by history – that our country was liberated. Many others, such as the people only 20 kilometres to the east of my home, experienced occupation rather than liberation. That is why we believe that Russia should at last come to acknowledge that, while many Russian soldiers came as liberators, they did bring with them a regime under which the same liberators remained as an occupying power and that many peoples – not only in the Soviet Union but also in many neighbouring countries – suffered oppression. If this were to come to be accepted, it would make dialogue so much easier. I hope that all citizens on either side of the former border with the Eastern bloc accept that this dual truth was once the case. Our group was very sad to lose Mr Ilves as a member, but we are, today, very glad that such a level-headed man as he is President of Estonia. Here are two short quotations from him. He drew attention to the website of a young Russian woman, who had written on it, ‘ ’, to which he added, ‘ ’. The last sentence in his speech, which really is most remarkable, goes like this: ‘It is customary in Europe that differences that occur now and then between states are solved by diplomats and politicians, not on the streets or by computer attacks. Those are the ways of other countries, or, I would add, other times, somewhere else, not in Europe.’ What we in Europe need is dialogue and conversation rather than attacks on embassies or demonstrations in front of them, because it is this dialogue itself that is of the essence of Europe."@en1
"Thank you, Maria"1
"We are Russians, but our homeland is Estonia"1

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