Prime Minister Juha Sipilä (Centre) has firmly refuted suggestions that the assessments used to determine whether or not a particular country is safe enough for unsuccessful asylum seekers to return to are politically motivated.
“They certainly aren’t,” he exclaimed in a speech to his party comrades in Tampere on Saturday.
“If Sweden changes its assessments, Finland will follow suit. Our assessments of the countries where people can and cannot be returned to are in line with each other,” stated Sipilä.
He estimated that the debate surrounding the issue has veered into dubious territory, as more and more are calling into question the functionality of the rule of law. “We mustn’t be bright-eyed but we must have faith in the authorities and the legal system,” he stressed.
Finnish authorities, he added, are making their decisions on which countries and regions are safe carefully – on the same grounds as before.
Sipilä admitted that the voice of the heart and the voice of reason are prone to the occasional clash amidst the debate over the forced returns of unsuccessful asylum seekers.
“My heart tells me to share a meal and offer a place to stay to everyone who is fleeing war. But we must also keep in mind that not all of those people are coming here with good intentions. There has been a change in our security situation. Reason tells us that we have to take this into consideration,” he explained.
Sipilä also revealed that he is prepared to raise the country’s refugee quota in the event that an agreement on the issue is found by the European Union.
Paula Risikko (NCP), the Minister of the Interior, has revealed that a proposal to raise the annual quota by 300 to 1,050 will be discussed as the Finnish Government convenes for its mid-term session on Monday and Tuesday.
Aleksi Teivainen – HT
Photo: Antti Aimo-Koivisto – Lehtikuva
Source: Uusi Suomi