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Estonia: Soviet history, Russian relations, defence frontlines & the cutting edge of digital (part 1)

It’s been 100 years since the Baltic states declared their independence – and 27 since they emerged from the collapse of the Soviet Union. In Europe Now, FRANCE 24’s European Affairs Editor Catherine Nicholson takes us to the smallest of them. In Estonia, she meets President Kersti Kaljulaid who gives us her view on security threats from Russia, and tells us why she still has confidence in NATO, despite criticism and threats to the body from US President Donald Trump.


With our guests; MEP Yana Toom and former foreign minister-turned MEP Urmas Paet, as well as filmmaker Ilmar Raag, we find out how Estonia has evolved in its 27 years of post-Soviet existence. We ask how joining the EU in 2004 changed the country – offering new opportunities at home but also inspiring a brain-drain of young talent.

In part 1: Estonia is already known as a digital powerhouse. Now, with Artificial Intelligence increasingly coming into the picture, what does this mean for tech companies, for our daily lives, and are citizens getting enough protection from intrusions into their data? With Russian-Estonians making up around a quarter of the population, we travel to the 95 percent Russian town of Narva, to hear from some of the 300,000 people within this demographic.

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