President Sauli Niinistö has urged parties to shed light on their foreign and security policy views in the build-up to the parliamentary elections held in Finland on 14 April. (Markku Ulander – Lehtikuva)


PRESIDENT Sauli Niinistö and Minister for Foreign Affairs Timo Soini (BR) have both called for a greater emphasis on foreign and security policy in the run-up to the parliamentary elections held in Finland on 14 April.

“The Parliament defines the outlines of Finnish foreign and security policy. They are respected. That’s why it’d be good to talk about the objectives of each party,” Niinistö stated on Twitter on Sunday.

Soini, meanwhile, expressed his bafflement with the opposition parties’ lack of foreign and security policy-related initiatives and questions over the past four years.

“The opposition hasn’t really disturbed, let alone challenged, the minister for foreign affairs over the past four years, with the exception of the political manhunt last autumn that ended in a complete failure and defeat as the personal motion of no confidence was rejected in the session hall by a clear margin,” he wrote in his blog on Saturday.

Soini was referring to a motion of no confidence brought against him due to his repeated anti-abortion actions and statements.

He also encouraged political parties to announce five priorities in the area of foreign and security policy. “The most recent polls show that the minister for foreign affairs may come from any of five different parties: Antti Rinne (SDP), Petteri Orpo (NCP), Pekka Haavisto (Greens), Jussi Halla-aho (PS) and Juha Sipilä (Centre). Table your priorities,” said Soini.

Aleksi Teivainen – HT
Source: Uusi Suomi