Estonian parliament won't recognise freedom fighters

TALLINN. April 18 (Interfax) - The Estonian parliament has rejected an initiative by the opposition to recognize the Forest Brothers and Estonians who fought in armies of the Third Reich as fighters for the liberation of Estonia.

The Estonian government rejected the proposal by the opposition Fatherland Union and the Union for the Republic - Res Publica on March 30.

A draft decree on the armed resistance of Estonians against military occupation by the Soviet Union provided for the legal recognition of the armed struggle against Soviet military aggression in Estonia during World War II and later against illegal occupation as a fight to liberate Estonia, making the soldiers who took part in the fight fighters for the liberation of Estonia.

People who fought in German armies and in Estonian forests after the war want to be recognized in a way that fully compensates for damages incurred during the Soviet occupation, including imprisonments, humiliations, restrictions on housing, positions and education, privation of property and inferior life, an explanatory note to the document says.

Before the readings, the Estonian Justice ministry said that passing the resolution as it is, was likely to fuel hatred between people who fought for different parties.


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