WORLD NEWS

Finland plans to close its entire border with Russia over migration concerns

Nov 28, 2023, 7:49 AM | Updated: May 24, 2024, 11:06 am

Finland's border guards walk at construction site of the border barrier fence between Finland and R...

Finland's border guards walk at construction site of the border barrier fence between Finland and Russia near Pelkola border crossing point in Imatra, south-eastern Finland, Friday, April 14, 2023. (AP Photo/Sergei Grits)
Credit: ASSOCIATED PRESS

(AP Photo/Sergei Grits)

HELSINKI (AP) — Finland will close its last remaining road border with Russia due to concerns over migration, Prime Minister Petteri Orpo said Tuesday, accusing Moscow of undermining Finland’s national security.

Finland already closed seven of its eight of the checkpoints along its long border Russia this month following a surge in arrivals of migrants from the Middle East and Africa. The government accuses Moscow of ushering the migrants toward the Finnish border.

“The government has decided to close the entire eastern border,” Orpo told reporters, saying the country faced an “exceptional” situation.

“We don’t accept any attempt to undermine our national security,” he said.

Finnish authorities say about 900 migrants crossed the border from Russia this month, significantly more than normal. It has accused Russia of trying to create a migration crisis in Finland following the Nordic nation’s entry into NATO this year.

Interior Minister Mari Rantanen said the last border crossing for vehicle traffic that remains open, Raja-Jooseppi in Finland’s Arctic north, would close at midnight Wednesday.
A railway crossing between the two countries remains open but for cargo traffic only.
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Finland plans to close its entire border with Russia over migration concerns