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Finland plans to expel Russians arriving without valid reasons – Finnish Interior Minister says

Finland plans to expel Russians who arrive in the country without valid reasons, even if Russia refuses to accept them, according to the country’s Interior Minister.
Finland's border crossing with Russia
The Nuijamaa Border Crossing Point in Lappeenranta, Finland. Credit: Yle.
Finland plans to expel Russians arriving without valid reasons – Finnish Interior Minister says

According to Finnish broadcaster Yle, Finland’s Interior Minister Mari Rantanen said that those arriving without valid reasons will be returned to Russia, even if Russia refuses to accept them.

Yle reported that this stance comes as part of a controversial draft border security law to prevent instrumentalized migration across Finland’s eastern border.

“The starting point is that a person attempting to cross the border without grounds will be returned to Russia, even if the Russian side refuses to accept them,” Rantanen said.

She didn’t specify how this would be implemented in practice.

The proposed legislation would suspend asylum applications at Finland’s border during its enforcement, with exceptions made for particularly vulnerable individuals such as children, disabled persons, and those facing the threat of capital punishment or torture in their home countries.

Rantanen disagreed with the Finnish Border Guard Union’s suggestion that vulnerability assessments should be conducted by the chief of the Border Guard Service or at least an officer with the rank of lieutenant or higher. “That’s not a very realistic option,” she said.

The Finnish Prime Minister Petteri Orpo said earlier in May that Finland’s border with Russia could be partially reopened once the “expulsion law” is adopted.

The Finnish government had indefinitely closed the border with Russia in April to counter a potential hybrid migration crisis.

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