US National Security Adviser John Bolton said in a statement on Thursday he met with Estonian President Kersti Kaljulaid to discuss bilateral cooperation aimed at strengthening security in Europe, Trend reported citing Sputnik.
“Great meeting with President Kaljulaid of Estonia, our reliable partner and Ally”, Bolton said via Twitter. “Productive discussion on enhancing defense and security cooperation in Europe”.
The Estonian president held a series of meeting with top US officials to address issues of security and bilateral cooperation during his visit to the United States from 11 March to 14 March.
Estonian-US relations have been strong since Estonia gained independence in 1991. The two countries have signed a number of bilateral agreements, including a cybersecurity partnership statement inked in 2013 on the margins of a NATO ministerial meeting. Also, Estonia has been a member of NATO since March 2004.
Estonia is consistently increasing its military spending. The country's 2018 defence budget reached 523 million euros, which is 44 million more than in 2017. Moreover, the government of Estonia has endorsed the country's budget for the next year with a record $687 million allocated for defence.
Estonia is one of the few NATO members which has brought its defense spending to 2 percent of the GDP, as demanded by the alliance. Other NATO states reaching the yardstick are Greece, Poland, Romania, the United Kingdom and the United States.
Moscow have repeatedly expressed concerns over NATO's activities on the borders with Russia, stressing that they posed real threats to Russia's security.