Estonia Government: from the All Country Info reference guide to country facts

Estonia Government

Estonia Government: A summary of information about Estonia Government, from government research data as well as independent research and other sources.

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Estonia: Government

Country name
conventional long form: Republic of Estonia
conventional short form: Estonia
local long form: Eesti Vabariik
local short form: Eesti
former: Estonian Soviet Socialist Republic
Data code
EN
Government type
parliamentary democracy
Capital
Tallinn
Administrative divisions
15 counties (maakonnad, singular - maakond):
Harjumaa (Tallinn), Hiiumaa (Kardla), Ida-Virumaa (Johvi), Jarvamaa
(Paide), Jogevamaa (Jogeva), Laanemaa (Haapsalu), Laane-Virumaa
(Rakvere), Parnumaa (Parnu), Polvamaa (Polva), Raplamaa (Rapla),
Saaremaa (Kuessaare), Tartumaa (Tartu), Valgamaa (Valga), Viljandimaa
(Viljandi), Vorumaa (Voru)
note: counties have the administrative center name following in
parentheses
Independence
6 September 1991 (from Soviet Union)
National holiday
Independence Day, 24 February (1918)
Constitution
adopted 28 June 1992
Legal system
based on civil law system; no judicial review of
legislative acts
Suffrage
18 years of age; universal for all Estonian citizens
Executive branch
chief of state: President Lennart MERI (since 5 October 1992)
head of government: Prime Minister Mart LAAR (since 29 March 1999)
cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by the prime minister,
approved by Parliament
elections: president elected by Parliament for a five-year term; if he
or she does not secure two-thirds of the votes after three rounds of
balloting, then an electoral assembly (made up of Parliament plus
members of local governments) elects the president, choosing between
the two candidates with the largest percentage of votes; election last
held August-September 1996 (next to be held fall 2001); prime minister
nominated by the president and approved by Parliament
election results: Lennart MERI reelected president by an electoral
assembly after Parliament was unable to break a deadlock between MERI
and RUUTEL; percent of electoral assembly vote - Lennart MERI 61%,
Arnold RUUTEL 39%
Legislative branch
unicameral Parliament or Riigikogu (101 seats;
members are elected by popular vote to serve four-year terms)
elections: last held 7 March 1999 (next to be held NA March 2003)
election results: percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party -
Center Party 28, Union of Pro Patria (Fatherland League) 18, Reform
Party 18, Moderates 17, Country People's Party (Agrarians) 7,
Coalition Party 7, UPPE 6,
Judicial branch
National Court, chairman appointed by Parliament for
life
Political parties and leaders
Center Party or K [Edgar SAVISAAR,
chairman]; Coalition Party and Rural Union or KMU [Andrus OOVEL,
chairman]; Country People's Party ; Moderates or M
; Reform Party or RE ; Union of
Pro Patria or Fatherland League (Isamaaliit) ;
United People's Party or UPPE
International organization participation
BIS, CBSS, CCC, CE, EAPC,
EBRD, ECE, EU (applicant), FAO, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICFTU, ICRM, IFC,
IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM (observer), ISO
(correspondent), ITU, OPCW, OSCE, PFP, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNMIBH,
UNMIK, UNTSO, UPU, WEU (associate partner), WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTrO
Diplomatic representation in the US
chief of mission: Ambassador Sven JURGENSON
chancery: 2131 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008
telephone:  (202) 588-0101
FAX:  (202) 588-0108
consulate(s) general: New York
Diplomatic representation from the US
chief of mission: Ambassador Melissa WELLS
embassy: Kentmanni 20, Tallinn EE 0001
mailing address: use embassy street address
telephone:  (6) 312-021
FAX:  (6) 312-025
Flag description
pre-1940 flag restored by Supreme Soviet in May 1990
- three equal horizontal bands of blue (top), black, and white
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