AP

Estonian leader Kaja Kallas asked to form new government

Jul 13, 2022, 5:35 PM | Updated: Jul 14, 2022, 5:46 am

Prime Minister of Estonia, Kaja Kallas speaks during an interview with The Associated Press in Tall...

Prime Minister of Estonia, Kaja Kallas speaks during an interview with The Associated Press in Tallinn, Estonia, Wednesday, June 22, 2022. Kallas called European unity on the war in Ukraine “a negative surprise” for Russian President Vladimir Putin. Still, she told The Associated Press in an interview on Wednesday, one shouldn’t underestimate Moscow’s military capabilities, because “they are in this for the long haul.” (AP Photo/Sergei Grits)

(AP Photo/Sergei Grits)

HELSINKI (AP) — Estonia’s president on Thursday asked Prime Minister Kaja Kallas to form a new government after she tendered the resignation of her one-party minority Cabinet, ending a more than month-long political stalemate in the Baltic nation.

President Alar Karis said in a tweet after meeting with Kallas that “I signed the resignation request of Prime Minister @kajakallas but also asked her to form a new government which could start working quickly and deal with all important issues of Estonian life.”

Estonia’s government crisis culminated in early June as Kallas, leader of the ruling center-right Reform Party, kicked out the left-leaning Center Party from the two-party coalition. The parties had substantial differences over spending and welfare policies amid increasing Estonian household costs because of high inflation.

The inflation rate in Estonia, a member of the European Union and NATO whose population is 1.3 million people, is now the highest in the 19-nation eurozone, with annual inflation hitting 22% in June, according to Eurostat, the EU statistics agency. High energy prices are one of the main causes of inflation in the Baltic nation.

Last week, the politically liberal Reform Party that runs on a conservative fiscal policy platform, struck a coalition deal with the opposition Social Democrats and the small conservative Fatherland (“Isamaa”) party.

The three parties together muster a comfortable 56-seat majority at the 101-seat Riigikogu legislature. The coalition arrangement prevents Kallas, who became Estonia’s first female prime minister in January 2021, from having to govern with a one-party minority Cabinet. It is already the third government in Estonia in a period of just over three years since the 2019 parliamentary election.

The new government needs formal approval from Parliament before it can be appointed by Karis and sworn in this week or early next week. Kallas tweeted that she would be asking lawmakers for a mandate to form her second Cabinet on Friday.

The government will be short-lived as Estonia is scheduled to hold a general election in March.

The 45-year-old Kallas is the daughter of former Estonian Prime Minister and European Commissioner Siim Kallas, who was one of the founders of the Reform Party — a key political party in the Baltic country — in the 1990s. She has led the Reform Party since 2018.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

moore redmond washington...

Associated Press

U.S. Supreme Court rules against Redmond couple challenging foreign income tax

The court ruled in the case of Charles and Kathleen Moore, of Redmond, Washington after they previously challenged a $15,000 tax bill.

14 hours ago

Image:The New York Giants' Willie Mays poses for a photo during baseball spring training in 1972. M...

Associated Press

Willie Mays, Giants’ electrifying ‘Say Hey Kid,’ dies at 93

Willie Mays, whose singular combination of talent, drive and exuberance made him one of baseball’s greatest players, has died. He was 93.

2 days ago

Image: This photo provided by the Washington Department of Ecology shows a derailed BNSF train on t...

Associated Press

Judge orders BNSF to pay Washington tribe nearly $400M for trespassing with oil trains

BNSF Railway must pay the sum to a Native American tribe in Washington after it ran 100-car trains with crude oil on the tribe's reservation.

3 days ago

Photo: In this photo provided by Tieanna Joseph Cade, an amusement park ride is shown stuck with 30...

Associated Press

Crews rescue 28 people trapped upside down high on Oregon amusement park ride

Emergency crews in Oregon rescued 28 people after they were stuck dangling upside down high on a ride at a century-old amusement park.

3 days ago

juneteenth shooting texas...

Associated Press

2 killed and 6 wounded in shooting during a Juneteenth celebration in a Texas park

A shooting in a Texas park left two people dead and six wounded, including two children, on Saturday, authorities said.

4 days ago

Photo: Israeli soldiers drive a tank near the Israeli-Gaza border, in southern Israel, Wednesday, J...

Jack Jeffery, The Associated Press

8 Israeli soldiers killed in southern Gaza in deadliest attack on Israeli forces in months

An explosion in Gaza killed eight Israeli soldiers, the military said Saturday, making it the deadliest attack on Israeli forces in months.

5 days ago

Estonian leader Kaja Kallas asked to form new government