Finnish Prime Minister Juha Sipilä’s announcement Saturday that he’d offer his home to refugees is not only a good attempt by the government to steer Finland back to the direction of other Western European nations in the refugee ongoing crisis but a clear show of leadership that has been lacking.
The decision to offer refugees temporary shelter in his home is a clear snub at its anti-immigration partner, the Perussuomalaiset (PS),* which would be more than happy lead Finland in the direction of the Baltic States, Poland, Slovakia and Hungary in the ever-growing humanitarian crisis.
When asked Friday what Europe should do to resolve the refugee crisis, PS chairman and Foreign Minster Timo Soini gave the same answer as Hungary’s Prime Minister Viktor Orbán. He said that the EU should enforce its border controls and not permit people from entering the EU.
If it was difficult for the PS to approve the bailout package to Greece, how is the anti-immigration party, which has promised to resolve the “Somali and Muslim problem” in Finland, going to explain to its voters that it forms part of a government that let in a record number of refugees?
What excuse, as with the bailout package to Greece, will the PS tell their voters?
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What was the stick the broke the camel’s back or was it broken at all?
Did Sipilä get encouraged by German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who said this week that “there sill be zero tolerance for those who put in question the dignity of other people?”
What exactly made the prime minister make such a pledge?
Was it a subtle way by Sipilä of telling the PS to either shape up or ship out?
Was it when Sweden’s Foreign Minister Margot Wallström told Finland Friday that it should not forget its history and that Sweden gave refuge to 70,000 Finnish children during World War 2?
Or was it PS Party Secretary Riikka Slunga-Poutsalo’s demeaning description of these people crossing to Europe by calling them “surfers” searching for a better standard of living?
Was it the tragic picture of three-year-old Aylan Kurdi washed ashore and who laid lifeless?
What about PS spokesman Matti Putkonen’s blacklist and his attempts to tell the media how to do its job?
Migrant Tales would like to take the opportunity to thank Immonen and Slunga-Poutsalo for their disgraceful statements.What they have accomplished by harming the PS in a few weeks would have taken anti-racism activists much longer to accomplish.
One analyst Migrant Tales spoke to said that Immonen, Slunga-Poutsalo and Putkonen have hurt the party.
“Before it [xenophobic rhetoric] was all theoretical since refugees were so far away,” the analyst said. “Now it’s real and that changes everything.”
* 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.