Finnish PS Kotka counclman under police investigation for ethnic agitation

by , under Enrique Tessieri

Mertsu Merivirta is a Perussuomalaiset (PS)* party councilman of the southern Finnish city of Kotka. His Facebook wall is full of nationalist anti-immigration posts and sexism. If you’re going to victimize migrants and minorities why not include women as well. 

Is it a surprise that Merivirta is a member of the nationalist populist PS?

All of the above is second- and third-hand knowledge about the PS, a party that gets attention and support by spreading bigotry about migrants and minorities.

Merivirta is under police investigation for ethnic agitation for a Facebook post on October 28, which has been removed.

In light of the police investigation, the Kotka city board not only condemned what was published but recommended that the  PS city council group suspend Merivirta from taking part in city council meetings until the investigation is over.

Näyttökuva 2015-11-4 kello 9.11.27
City of Kotka councilman Metrsu Merivirta was in “a euphoric” state when he posted this on his Facebook page, which was removed. The post states above the machine gun  that soon you’ll have as neighbors “happy migrants.” “Greet them in the traditional way in Finland,” the post adds.

Guess what the answer was from the head of the Kotka PS city council group, Freddy Van Wonterghem, a far right politician who has been sentenced for ethnic agitation as well?

Right. The PS city council group will not take any action against Merivirta.

Van Wonterghem, in the usual PS style, played down what happened and blamed the councilman’s “state of euphoria” for posting a hostile picture on Facebook against asylum seekers and migrants.

What does “state of euphoria” mean? Does it mean having one too many and losing it?

The YLE journalist that wrote the story didn’t apparently care to ask this important question.

“The thoughtless picture [on his Facebook wall] has received a disproportionate amount of attention,” Van Wonterghem was quoted as saying in YLE. “After all, Merivirta hasn’t profilied himself as a migration critic [politician][sic!].”

I disagree. It’s these types of posts and, worse, the lame reaction to them that permits racists to spread their unacceptable behavior and see another day. The correct word for it is shameless bravado.

If you disagree why not ask what would kind of a reaction would we see in Finland if a migrant posted something similar on his or her Facebook wall.

Merivirta is another sad example of the hostility of the PS against migrants and minorities.

The Finnish name of the Finns Party is the Perussuomalaiset (PS). The English-language names 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.