Estonian leader suggests 'Selective Isolation' of Russia
Estonian President Toomas Hendrik Ilves says the "principled, selective isolation" of Russia should be an option for dealing with Russian actions that threaten democracy.
At a dinner in Prague on June 4 ahead of an international democracy and security conference in the Czech capital, Ilves questioned whether Russia should be a member of international organizations like the Council of Europe or the Group of Eight (G8) leading industrialized countries.
Referring to President Vladimir Putin's threat to aim Russian missiles at European targets in response to the U.S. plan to install an antimissile system in the Czech Republic and Poland, Ilves said, "If it is true that democracies do not go to war with each other, then what the hell is a country that threatens to target its nuclear missiles at Europe doing in the G8, the club of industrial democracies?"
Ilves said membership in such organizations has had "no effect" on Russian behavior, and that Russia's legitimacy as a democracy is "increasingly dubious." // Copyright (c) 2005. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036. RFE/RL