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Statement of the President of the Republic Concerning the Article about the Air Harbour Area Published in Eesti Päevaleht on April 25

1. Wishing to form a common vision of the architectural development of Tallinn, the President of the Republic visited the coastal area of Tallinn on June 5 of the last year together with the mayor, employees of the Planning Board and the Harju County governor in order to see how the capital is opened to the sea. They also visited the hangar of hydroplanes near Küti Street, where construction work that had not been co-ordinated with the City Government was being performed.

2. The President of the Republic informed the Minister of Defence, the Minister of Environment and the Auditor General of this unlawful construction work on facilities belonging to the state. The President demanded termination of unlawful activities and giving an opinion of what had happened.

3. In his reply from 21.07.2000, Minister of Environment Heiki Kranich informed the President of the Republic that inspectors of the Environmental Inspectorate examined the Air Harbour and discovered that an offence was being committed, and submitted the materials for imposing administrative punishment to the Administrative Court of Tallinn.

4. In his reply from 08.08.2000, the Auditor General informed the President of the Republic that both material and moral damages had been caused to the state with what happened in the Air Harbour, because long-term inability to guarantee lawful order was demonstrated. Due to the court dispute, it is impossible for the state to perform actual inspection and there are no legal possibilities to guarantee that property is preserved.

5. On August 25, 2000, Tallinn City Court ruled that the Air Harbour area belongs to the state. Further judicial proceedings in relation to the Air Harbour are continuing. The property is administrated by the Ministry of Justice.

6. At the meeting with the Prime Minister held yesterday, the Prime Minister explained to the President of the Republic in relation to the standpoints given in Eesti Päevaleht that the Air Harbour areas will remain in the ownership of the state and will not be municipalised.

7. Today, the President of the Republic confirmed again that all legal issues are in the competence of Estonian courts, excluding the right and obligation of the Republic of Estonia to exercise sovereign power in the Republic of Estonia. The said coast with the air base belonged to the Ministry of Defence of Estonia before Estonia was occupied and was by force taken in use by the Red Army on June 22 and 23, 1940. No new legal connections whatsoever were born from this violence. The President is expecting from the Government of the Republic that the sovereignty and executive power of Estonia is exercised also in this area.

8. To confirm this, the President of the Republic today sent letters to the Auditor General and the Minister of Justice.

Office of the President of the Republic
Kadriorg, April 26, 2001


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