Thanks to the 107 MPs listed below that voted on April 13 to approve law 2/2016 that did away with granting residence permits on humanitarian grounds, Finland faces today an unprecedented rise of undocumented migrants.
Prior to scrapping residence permits on humanitarian grounds, an asylum seeker who got a negative decision from the Finnish Immigration Service (Migri) was granted a temporary residence permit if there wasn’t a repatriation between Finland and his country.
Law 2/2016 is poorly thought-out and is an example of how populism and xenophobia are guiding the government by the leash when it comes to immigration policy. Thus Finland’s immigration policy doesn’t hinge on whether countries like Iraq are safe or not, but on anti-immigration politics.
I am astounded many times to watch officials of the Migri, politicians who are interviewed by complacent journalists state that these people only came to Europe to search for a better life.
So?! Is it is a crime to flee a failed state like Iraq embroiled in violence and search for a better life in Europe?
Anti-immigration rhetoric in Finland has become so extreme that we label whole groups for fleeing countries that we destroyed directly and indirectly in the first place.
As the decision to grant only one-third of asylum seekers a residence permit has nothing to do with reality and is a political statement, the most interesting question is why Finland has thrown to the side its own sense of fairness and empathy for people in need?
The answer and the guiding force of our ever-draconian immigration policy hinge on keeping our society white and Christian.
Politicians and the media won’t tell you this outright but that’s the code we are reading from them over and over again.
The only reason why the Center Party and National Coalition Party can do business with the anti-immigration populist Perussuomalaiset* in government is because they too want to keep Finland white.
Below are the MPs that voted in April to do away with granting residence permits on humanitarian grounds. The only opposition parties that backed the government was the Christian Democrats and Social Democrats, which most of its MPs voted in favor of the bill.
Some of the surprise names to emerge from the list is Social Democrat MP Nasima Razmyar, who voted in favor of the law.
Olavi Ala-Nissilä/Center Party
Mikko Alatalo/Center Party
Anne Berner/Center party
Markku Eestilä/National Coalition Party
Eeva-Johanna Eloranta/Social Democratic Party
Sari Essayah/Christian Democratic Party
Maarit Feldt-Ranta/Social Democratic Party
Sanni Grahn-Laasonen/National Coalition Party
Maria Guzenina/Social Democratic party
Pertti Hakanen/Center Party
Timo Harakka/Social Democratic Party
Harry Harkimo/National Coalition Party
Lasse Hautala/Center Party
Eero Heinäluona/Social Democratic Party
Petri Honkonen/Center Party
Hannu Hoskonen/Center Party
Antti Häkkänen/National Coalition Party
Lauri Ihalainen/Social Democratic Party
Marisanna Jarva/Center Party
Harri Jaskari/National Coalition Party
Kalle Jokinen/National Coalition Party
Kauko Juhantalo/Center Party
Antti Kaikonen/Center Party
Timo Kalli/Center Party
Ilkka Kanerva/National Coalition Party
Ilkka Kantola/Social Democratic Party
Mika Kari/Social Democratic Party
Elsa Katainen/Center Party
Niilo Keränen/Center Party
Anneli Kiljunen/Social Democratic Party
Krista Kiuru/Social Democratic Party
Esko Kiviranta/Center Party
Timo V. Korhonen/Center Party
Hanna Kosonen/Center Party
Katri Kulmuni/Center Party
Antti Kurvinen/Center Party
Seppo Kääriäinen/Center Party
Antero Laukkanen/Christian Democratic Party
Eero Lehti/National Coalition Party
Jari Leppä/Center Party
Antti Lindtman/Social Democratic Party
Mika Linkilä/Center Party
Markus Lohi/Center Party
Eeva-Maria Maijala/Center Party
Kai Mykkänen/National Coalition Party
Outi Mäkelä/National Coalition Party
Merja Mäkisalo-Ropponen/Social Democratic Party
Ilmari Nurminen/Social Democratic Party
Sirpa Paatero/Social Democratic Party
Aila Paloniemi/Center Party
Ulla Parviainen/Center Party
Jaana Pelkonen/National Coalition Party
Tuomo Puumala/Center Party
Juha Pylväs/Center Party
Nasima Razmyar/Social Democratic Party
Juha Rehula/Center Party
Antti Rinne/Social Democratic Party
Wille Rydman/National Coalition Party
Joona Räsänen/Social Democratic Party
Päivi Räsänen/Christian Democratic Party
Pertti Salolainen/National Coalition Party
Kristiina salonen/Social Democratic Party
Sari Sarkomaa/National Coalition Party
Arto Salonen/National Coalition Party
Juha Sipilä/Center Party
Saara-Sofia Sirén/National Coalition Party
Ville Skinnari/Social Democratic Party
Eero Suutari/National Coalition Party
Satu Taavitsainen/Social Democratic Party
Katja Taimela/Social Democratic Party
Sari Tanus/Christian Democratic Party
Tapani Tölli/Center Party
Juhana Vartiainen/National Coalition Party
Anu Vehviläinen/Center Party
Pia Virtanen/Social Democratic Party
Eerikki Viljanen/Center Party
Ben Zyskowicz/National Coalition Party
Peter Östman/Christian Democratic Party
* The Finnish name for the Finns Party is the Perussuomalaiset (PS). The English names of the party adopted by the PS, like True Finns or Finns Party, promote in our opinion nativist nationalism and xenophobia. We, therefore, prefer to use the Finnish name of the party on our postings. The direct translation of “Perussuomalaiset” is “basic” or “fundamental Finn.”