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Minister of the Interior Paula Risikko spoke to the media as the government unveiled its new internal security strategy in Helsinki on 5 October, 2017.
Minister of the Interior Paula Risikko spoke to the media as the government unveiled its new internal security strategy in Helsinki on 5 October, 2017.

 

The Finnish government gave a provisional stamp of approval for a new internal security strategy that, for example, assesses the security ramifications of immigration in Helsinki on 5 October, 2017.

The government acknowledges that immigration should be considered a resource in light of the ageing population, employment situation and competitiveness of Finland, but also reminds that its nature and scope are difficult to predict and control.

“Immigration must be controlled. Two-way migration shapes cultures but also affects internal security. Immigration to Finland from conflict-affected areas can increase the presence of international crime and terrorist organisations in Finland,” it states in its decision-in-principle on the security strategy. 

“Migration is not the cause of the threat of terrorism in Finland or Europe, but those arriving from conflict-affected areas also include people who have become violently radicalised, which for its part has an impact on the phenomenon as a whole.”

The government also calls attention to the security threat posed by the most radical opponents of immigration.

“The offences, suspicions and violent extremism against immigrants are growing security threats in an era of increasing immigration. These security threats affect not only immigrants but also a larger group of Finns that differs ethnically or culturally from the mainstream population,” it acknowledges.

The current migration trends necessitate that the capabilities of immigration and security authorities be stepped up, according to the government.

Paula Risikko (NCP), the Minister of the Interior, emphasises in a press release that in order to promote internal security in the long term, the resources of security authorities must be guaranteed for periods longer than a single year.

She estimates that the ability to anticipate social changes that have been linked to security threats is key for the long-term planning of resources and reminds that it is not possible to develop sufficient capabilities overnight after a threat has arisen.

“It requires that education, instrumentation and other resources are secured well ahead of time. For example, basic police education takes three years,” highlights Risikko.

She also confirmed that the government is intent on increasing the number of border officers at the border between Finland and Russia, reminding that an additional 7.9 million euros was allocated for the Finnish Border Guard in April. The western border, on the other hand, is not mentioned in the strategy despite the recent demands emanating from the Centre and Finns Party.

Aleksi Teivainen – HT
Photo: Heikki Saukkomaa – Lehtikuva
Source: Uusi Suomi

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